Research shows, the earlier a child is exposed to learning, the more likely the child will be ready to enterKindergarten ready to learn and will be a life-long learner. As a member of the Board of education, our district has led the state in investing in all day and half day Kindergarten in every elementary, Preschool classes in our Community Learning Centers at the Glendale-Mountain campus and Rose Park Community Learning Center and Parents as Teachers (PAT) program, which is home visitor program available to all families with children birth to 5 who live within the district boundaries. I will continue, as I have for 13 years, to advocate for additional resources for early childhood, preschool and our PAT program. The early years of a child’s life are critical for development and to provide for success in school and life.
Recruit and Retain Quality Teachers
In the school year 2015-2016, state-wide, school began with 500 classrooms without a highly qualified teacher. Salt Lake District, was among those districts, who could not fill every classroom when school started in August. Our state faces an acute shortage of classroom teachers, long hours, low pay and a lack of appreciation lends to the problem that fewer and fewer college students are choosing a profession In education.
Our students deserve to have a highly qualified teacher in their classroom. It is my goal to continue to advocate for our state legislature to fully fund our public schools, which includes elevating the profession of teaching by increasing teacher pay. I will continue, as I have for 13 years, to advocate for our teachers to be provided the tools needed to feel supported and respected in our school district.
Graduation Rates and Achievement Gap
Salt Lake School District needs to continue to explore and research how to increase the graduation of ALL students as well as narrow the achievement gaps identified in district data. Ensuring ALL students are performing at or above grade level and are receiving appropriate, targeted interventions to close gaps, is imperative to the success of our students. As a member of the Board of Education, I will continue to focus on student outcomes,, helping to eliminate barriers and providing opportunities for all stakeholders to come together and ensure that all students are provided every opportunity to excel and are prepared for a wide range of career paths.