GOALS & OBJECTIVES
In the coming months, I plan to meet with parents, teachers, students, and any member of our community who wants to talk to learn more about the issues YOU believe affect our schools and the district.
Initially, though, there are three areas I’m focusing my campaign on and would aim to improve as a trustee — the three “O’s” (or objectives) that will help our district maintain the long tradition of excellence that remains a hallmark of our schools:
- Output: Continue our district’s outstanding record of success on exceeding state-mandated educational goals as measured by graduation rates, college placement and standardized tests, especially as our teachers and staff implement the Common Core curriculum. Maintain outstanding relationships with our teachers and staff so they can focus on what they do well every day — teach and mentor our district’s students. Continue to ensure that the District spends tax dollars — especially those collected from parcel taxes and bonds — wisely, efficiently, and maximally.
- Outlets: Our students face enormous pressures these days; I recall hearing when I was in high school that college admissions couldn’t become any harder. Yet, today our students apply to an ever-increasing number of colleges and take on an increasing number of academic and extracurricular activities just to ensure that they remain competitive. I want our District — through supportive partnerships local businesses — to provide our students with more and better outlets to relieve some of that pressure outside of school. That may include special high school student movie screenings or seeing plays at Lesher with rides to and from home or school sponsored by companies like Uber or Lyft, after-school programs that allow students to unwind and bond in a safe environment, and perhaps even puppy or kitten therapy during final exams and AP/standardized testing. All of these goals take resources at a time when our district faces financial challenges from inside and out. But I believe our “outputs” — great students — can only continue to succeed with strong, supportive “outlets”.
- Outside Engagement: It’s no secret that I possess a keen interest in and understanding of both government and politics. I want to leverage those relationships with our local state and federal legislators to help our district receive the resources it needs to maintain the strong traditions of excellence AND experiment with new educational means and methods to improve learning outcomes. We cannot lean on teachers and parents as the sole source of support through donated time, money, and bonds or parcel taxes for academic improvement and capital expansion. PILOT (payment-in-lieu-of-taxes) programs and statewide reform of Proposition 13 to close corporate loopholes also are important to ensure our students win in the future. Additionally, I want to engage business and corporate leaders in our community to find more opportunities — outside of the classroom that do not require expenditure of tax dollars — for our students to learn new skills that equip them for college as well as a career.
PAID FOR BY JEROME C. PANDELL FOR SCHOOL BOARD 2014 | FPPC NO. 1367833