EDUCATION WE CAN BELIEVE IN!
A Leader with GREAT Character
Read Larry's Article: The “Whole Child” platform is not Every Child First! Mines is. (2/20/2020) READ
As a volunteer in the community, and the father of a 5-year-old attending the county's public schools, I have a vested interest here for the long haul.
Great Schools. Great Education. "Where You Live."
We achieve great schools when we meet the needs of the individual students in a school community. Build up Great schools where students live! Instead of moving kids around, meet them where they are with the tools/resources and intervention, they need to be successful. Every child should be able to learn in the community where they live!
Title 1 schools require additional support and have intervention needs that may differ from other school communities. When we restructure school attendance areas based on the socio-economic status of the school population, we make it harder to dedicate needed resources to our Title 1 schools directly. I will work to ensure every Title 1 school has resource funding to meet individual student needs.
ACHIEVEMENT & OPPORTUNITY GAP
I plan to ensure that we address the individual needs of every student without causing inconvenience to the student or their parents. I believe we must provide every child the same opportunity to gain conceptual skills, nourish and advance their potential through academic enrichment (including Music education and the discipline of Athletics). To effectively close the achievement gap we have to solicit teacher input and understand what works for specific learning types.
There are socio-economic and racial opportunity gaps in Howard County. As an advocate, I will hold the county council accountable to the socio-economic needs and racial opportunity gaps of communities to develop practical solutions to improve the quality of life for all residents.
We have to make sure we have enough qualified teachers to educate every child. HCPSS has a diverse student population, and so I would work to encourage a diversity of educator-applicants to match the diversity of our student population. We have to also focus on culturally relevant curriculum with parent, student, and teacher input before implementation.
I plan to work with Mental Health experts to ensure school counselors receive practical training on how to assess, identify, and approach the root causes of mental health issues. We must ensure counselors have a conceptual understanding of and can make practical recommendations to help students work towards healthy resolves to dealing with root causes.
I believe that special education students are already underserved, and there’s not enough funding allocated to support special education. I first plan to increase community input to provide special education parents and teachers the rightful opportunities to work collaboratively with myself and my colleagues to develop an effective plan to support special educators, students, and families.
I am also committed to prioritizing Special Education reforms that ensure productive transitions from high school into the real world.
SCHOOL SAFETY & SECURITY
I believe the security measures we currently have in place have proven to be effective. What I would like to see is that we never let the memorandum of understanding with the police expire. I want to make sure that we request community input (students, parents, teachers, and police) to make any necessary updates to the memorandum of understanding to ensure it is respectful of student privacy and rights I also want to ensure that appropriate personnel receives updated training on current safety and security policies.
I have ten years of experience working in both management and supervisory roles, and I’ve gained the functioning experience required to effectively manage employee relations, evaluate employee performance, ensure productivity, and adhere to an established operating budget. Our school budget must be reviewed with a fine-tooth comb with input from all stakeholders. We have to see what is working and what's not helping our children effectively.
There is money to do what is needed, and there are unexplored future partnerships to be created to deliver on a commitment to serve our children through excellence in customer service in great schools in their communities.
Areas of Focus
Prioritize school maintenance and building upgrades to ensure safe and healthy learning environments, including to help alleviate overcrowding.
Responsible Budgetary Planning to reestablish long-term funding, make the best use of short-term funding, and to establish accountable rainy-day savings by developing a responsible classroom-focused operating budget by working with stakeholders to preserve money for G/T, Technology, Music, and Special Education while greatly reducing central office.
Redistricting We must focus on capacity because that is within the purview of the Board of Education. While the county does have socio-economic disparities, the public school system must serve children where they live and is not to be held accountable for the socioeconomic status of the school population, except for the role to meet individual student needs without inconveniences to the student.
While we must remember what we do to students, we do it to parents. The intent might be to serve the student better, but could negatively impact their household - this is a primary reason why I don’t support redistricting using socioeconomic status as a factor.
Overcrowding is an issue we must engage with extreme consideration and community input. To alleviate overcrowding, we have to make sure that no adjustments to school attendance areas ever happens the way it’s happened to polygon 96. We can look at this situation, in addition to others, as guiding principles in how not to draw the lines. We must also consider increasing school capacity (not overcrowding) where possible to keep communities together.
Skills for Getting it Done
I have proven to be a leader for our children and a voice for the community. As a parent, serving on the community association board of directors, I have the experience necessary for serving on the board of education, listening to resident input, and working collaboratively with others for the greater benefit of the community.
I know what it takes to find viable solutions, navigate complicated governmental agencies and get things done. I also see the importance of needing to be heard by your representation. My heart for all children will lead me to ensure that decisions require utmost consideration of all community input, fact-based analytical data, and a constant reminder that our children are not pawns in the political system.
Continuing My Commitment
For so long, officials have sought to get between parents and their children. I intend to stand with parents to uphold our values and advocate for the precious treasures of every community: our children. One of my top priorities as your Board of Education representative is to work to meet the unique needs of every school community so that we serve students and foster great schools in the communities where they live. We need a push to drive the success-in-education, community by community. I also plan to call our county officials to action so that we build up communities for children and families.
In District 2, we have a clear choice to make: Me or my two opponents. I'm not running because of convenience. I'm not running because of an opportunity to be elected. I was first to declare because I knew in April 2019 that it was time to start fighting for our children to get an education we can believe in!