October 4, 2020
School DistrictClintondale Community Schools
How long have you lived in your district?
5 years recently. Moved to clarkston for two years and then went to college. Came back after that. So almost my entire life.
Have you received any endorsements?
MEA, CEA, AFSCME
Are you an incumbent?
Why do you want to be a school board member?
Our district is a mess. I have the ability and time to help. I want to impress upon my son that it is important to help your community. I want to be able to influence what I think should be taught in schools. I want to uplift our community.
What does education justice mean to you? What does it mean specifically in the context of your school district?
Education justice to me is giving the students the ability & means to succeed in life, not just grades to get in to college. College is not a realistic choice for everyone, especially in our lower income district. Education justice is also teaching practical life lessons and experiences.
If you could completely reimagine the way schools look after this public health crisis, what would they look like?
I wouldn’t change anything. As good as virtual learning COULD be kids need to be with each other. Social skills and learning to deal with conflict is extremely important in their development, in my opinion.
Describe how you think parents, students, and families should be involved in making decisions within your school district?
I think everyone should be involved. In my experience the more a parent is involved the better the child does in school. It creates a sense of pride within the community and bonds its citizens together. I have boosted our PTO participation in recent years and because of this the school has done better and has had better ideas moving forward.
Who (if any) are your top financial supporters for your campaign?
MEA & CEA
What are your top 3 educational priorities/goals within your school district?
Trades, budget/finance, health
What are your top 3 educational priorities/goals at a state level?
What challenges do you anticipate this school year to COVID and what do you think your school district must do to keep students & staff safe?
I would say testing but that seems to be pretty inaccurate depending on who you speak with. This is such a tough question only because the message changes every day. There seems to be no consistency. How can we create an effective plan if we cannot even get accurate tests or understand how the disease actually spreads. Even if schools are shut down the majority of the community is pretty active. Who’s to say they cannot get sick outside of school. I went to Blake’s Cider Mill and there was probably a thousand people there all jam packed together… If we cannot get buy-in from everyone we are essentially spinning our tires. At the end of the day common sense and good health practices must prevail. And I am not just talking about washing our hands. I am talking about eating the correct way, exercising, and taking care of our bodies so we can effectively fight back against all disease and viruses.
What should be your school district’s top spending priorities in their budget? Alternatively, what should not be prioritized your district’s budget?
Our infrastructure seems to pretty good. Our tech may be lacking a little which is important as we continue to be more online. Getting our budget straight is top priority. After that we can look at the trades programs and internships.
What role do you think standardized tests should play in your school district?
I don’t have a strong stance on this topic just yet. I understand both sides of the argument though.
If you could have an impact on your school district’s curriculum , what changes would you make? What, if anything, would you keep the same?
Our health and our habits are so poor. It has a huge impact on our economy and our own pockets. I want to make sure that we are educating proper nutrition and cooking skills. You don’t have to be a professional chef to cook quick, tasty, and healthy meals. I also want to incorporate budgeting and finance. Something along the lines of a Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University. Credit has so much influence on what we are able to do and achieve in life, if our kids cannot experience it or understand it they will struggle to keep up and get ahead their entire lives.
What responsibility do you believe your school district has in supporting students’ and staffs’ mental and emotional health/wellbeing?
Mental health is very important. Anything they can do to help I believe is necessary.
How do you think your school district should handle student discipline/and make schools a safe place for students and staff?
Programs like “Watch DOGS” I believe is a great deterrent towards bad behavior in school. However, parenting and teaching responsibility is something that needs to be taught at home, then supplemented at school. We cannot expect teachers and the district to do everything. Figuring out a way to get more parent involvement into the schools will help create accountability and will put more pressure on parents to enforce rules and behaviors.
What are your top priorities around special education in your district?
I have had very limited experience with special ed. However, a good friend of mine is a spec ed teacher and I look forward to speaking with her and learning much more about their needs.
What is your perspective on working towards achieving equity within your school district?
I am unsure how to answer this question. Of course we want to be fair. Sometimes however, what may be best for the district is not always fair. The only way this works is if we are in this together. Sometimes sacrifices must be made and they should NEVER be forgotten. Communication is extremely important in anything we do. If we communicate properly so that everyone, from the top to the bottom, understands the goal and path we can achieve anything!
Any other information you want to include or share?
I may be a little raw when it comes to schools and their relationship with the state however my passion, ability to adapt/learn quickly, and dedication will surely put our district on the map for all the right reasons. Thank you.