Our school board is currently failing to keep the community updated on what is happening in our schools. Hamilton County schools are our schools, and every person has a right to easily access information and stay up to date on how to get involved in a school.
I plan to increase transparency by:
Establishing a transparent superintendent selection process that includes public forums, public interviews, and public comment.
Performing a top-to-bottom review of the budget with a focus on effective use of funds, and publishing the review in a detailed easy-to-read format.
Hosting school board meetings in schools at more appropriate times, and live-streaming meetings
Our school system is in dire need of positive change, and our school board and superintendent are not holding themselves accountable to make that change. It's time for our leaders to take their roles seriously, and to be held accountable for both the successes and failures of our schools.
I plan to improve accountability by:
Setting measurable goals for 2020
Establishing regular benchmarks for both self-assessment and community-assessment of progress
Developing procedures to assess the effectiveness of leaders in central office and our schools
Creating programs to educate parents on the school board and increase awareness of school board decisions
Schools are the backbone of our community. They produce our thinkers, leaders, innovators, and active citizens. Providing young people with education changes our world for the better, and everyone must be involved in that process.
I plan to encourage community involvement by:
Implementing the community schools model, which turns schools into community hubs that address needs such as providing dinner and healthcare, hosting after-school programs, and even offering work force development and GED courses for parents
Building partnerships with local businesses to develop programs for students and resource and time donation
Increasing parental involvement in our school system by supporting Parent Teacher Associations and establishing parent advisory councils for District 4 and the county
Supporting student voice by establishing a democratically-elected student advisory council for District 4
Developing strong relationships with the county commission who determines the school system budget
There is currently a lack of equity in our school system. Where a student lives and how much money their family makes impacts the opportunities they have access to. Every student should have the same opportunity to succeed, regardless of who they are.
I plan to establish equity by:
Establishing student-based budgeting which funds schools based on the needs of every student
Investigating the use of the cluster school zoning model, which increases parent choice in schools as well as socioeconomic diversity
Ensuring universal access to Pre-K so students enter school prepared, regardless of their socioeconomic or ethnic background
Recruiting teachers earlier in the year to ensure Hamilton County is competing for the best teachers from the best universities
Retaining talented teachers in our neediest schools through improved professional development, support systems, and incentives
Expanding academic offerings in District 4 to mirror other districts throughout Hamilton County