Acting on Community Knowledge

Learning → Developing → Implementing

Education is the most important issue facing our city. When we get education right, we lower crime, decrease poverty, improve economic development, and attract jobs to our community. I am running for re-election because I believe we must do more for our kids.  We must focus on the most crucial issues and stay accountable to our students by ensuring they are prepared for life after graduation. Together we can bridge the gap between our shared aspirations and the reality many of our children face every single day.

After four years of service on the Board I want to continue to apply everything I’ve learned. From policy ins and outs to key contacts, the relationships and knowledge base I’ve gained will be incredibly helpful in efficiently moving us forward over the next four years.

In my first term, I have worked to reduce those systemic disparities in academic performance and suspensions, and empower each school community to decide what is needed for their students.  We have seen the gains across the district for graduation rates, including some really big gains for our students with special needs and students of color.  While we still have more to do in this area, we’re headed in the right direction.

We have the power to create better outcomes for our kids. Governance is exceedingly important, and is effective by leading from a set of values and articulating those into a vision for our schools. Imagine a safe, supportive, rigorous school for every child in our district. We can accomplish that together!

We have to get serious

I was the only board member to vote no on this year’s budget because it did not clearly identify the way it would target resources to the students that need it the most.

We also need to increase the number of teachers of color throughout the district. Diversifying our workforce is crucial to removing the systemic bias students of color face on a daily basis. One successful program that does this which I have supported is the Grow Your Own initiative, a successful program which helps associate educators already within our schools become teachers in our classrooms. This is an option currently in front of the Board, and I believe we should increase funding for it.

I bring perspectives that no one else brings to the table.

  • Youth, energy, and relevant insight 
  • Community leader without kids in the school

Policy Makeover

Let's get technical

What's the problem?

The School Board’s current Policy Manual is from an archaic time. In fact, we can’t tell if we are in compliance of our own policies!

It’s based on a manual that Minneapolis Public Schools bought in the 1960s; it is redundant, virtually impossible to monitor and as a result is largely neglected. It also makes it easy for individual Board members to put their special interests ahead of Board priorities.

That is unacceptable.

Solutions? 

I have led the charge and with the help of fellow Board Members on the Policy Committee have dedicated the past year to changing this. We have written a new Policy Manual that will pass in committee and come to a Board vote this December. 

Great, what does it do?

It allows us to spend our time working to provide better schools for students and not jumping through arbitrary, untrackable hoops. The New Manual will make sure we are focusing on student outcomes. The board will govern through establishing a vision with the superintendent and community (students, families, partners) and then allow the superintendent to run our organization to get there while the board sets the boundaries, monitors progress, and assists as needed. The board needs to be ready to blaze trails and stand up for our schools as opposed to being worried about getting re-elected or upsetting a small group of people.

What's next? 

Implement the New Policy Manual.

We have a system that doesn’t work for all our students, I have worked tirelessly to fix that. We are on the eve of a shift when it comes to School Board function with our new Policy Manual and I will continue working to better schools for our kids. Now that we are getting rid of the old, broken system, we can begin to make real changes.

I'm willing to shift funds and budgets— I'm willing to do what we need for better academic programs. We cannot fix our schools with small changes, we need systemic corrections.

  • Equity—close the opportunity gap
  • Student Outcomes—increase academic rigor
  • Comprehensive Curriculum—elevate the arts
  • Focused Governing—align resources proactively