I am so excited to be a part of the first election in Anne Arundel County for the Board of Education. Our community will finally get to choose who will represent us in the creation of policy for our public schools. I want to be the voice of the students. I want our schools to be a safe, healthy, and mentally stimulating environment where all students are inspired. We have much work to do, but I believe this election provides a real opportunity for us to make school a place every student feels excited to go.
I have spent the past several weeks meeting with parents, teachers, and others involved with our school system. I am hearing many of the same concerns: over-testing, large class sizes, student safety, support for our teachers, the need for more counselors, student stress, obtaining services for students with learning disabilities or other challenges. While spending at central office has increased by 36% over the last decade, our county has only increased spending on teachers by 11%. It is critical that we refocus our spending directly in our schools. While we send our children to school to receive a quality education, academic gains cannot be achieved when there are not enough teachers, and our students and teachers are stressed. We must meet those basic needs first. We also need to task our administration with establishing educational practices based in science. There is so much research in education that is not being applied in schools. It is time to bring real advancement to our classrooms. This does not necessarily involve more spending, but shifting classroom teaching to better meet with students' mental and physical developmental needs, again, based on research.
I look forward to meeting with many more as this campaign moves along. If you have a group that you would like me to meet with, go to the volunteer page and send me a message.
Please check back here for more updates. I will continue to report on my campaign and share some of the stories I have collected along the campaign path. And please, spread the word! Thank you.