by Craig Jonas
Published Denver Post Your Hub
October 10, 2013
I was taught to try to understand and appreciate all perspectives before I make decisions.
And I had no idea.
Douglas County residents and neighbors I talked to had no idea.
All seemed to assume that people who run for the non-partisan, school board are locally engaged citizens who want what is best for our kids and our teachers.
Hearing some grumblings, I decided to do some research. I attended The Reformers movie (http://reformersmovie.com). I talked to Douglas County teachers.
As many as 90% of the Teachers are not happy – many feel threatened and are afraid. Many of the best Teachers are leaving (see: http://tinyurl.com/njd698a).
Students have less time in the classes, bigger class sizes, and are scoring lower on tests. My sophomore son currently has 2 open periods and will not need as many credits to graduate as my son who graduated recently (and now attends Colorado College). See: http://strongschoolscoalition.org/updated-dcsd-then-now/
While teachers are being eliminated and course-size is increasing, there is actually a significant surplus of money in the district ($80 million).
Even though the Board of Education is a non-partisan, a-political office, significant outside money has clearly influenced the current board set-up, with the apparent underlying intention to end public education as we know it.
I now want to do something to help elect new board members!
Chase, Keim, Hodges and Scholting are locally engaged citizens that would do a much better job looking out for our kids and our teachers. I think it would be great if both of you, Miley and Sinead, endorsed their efforts.
I have taught many courses at a variety of levels (I have a Ph.D. in Education), have started several small businesses (and understand the private side), have traveled and lived internationally (understand what “world class” really means); but it is the parent and community citizen in me that deeply wants things to be better for Douglas County!
Do your own research. Vote 4 Kids. Vote for all 4.