Work: Realtor/CENTURY 21 Premiere Inc.
Experience: My professional career is in the housing industry with more than 15 years’ experience as well as three years in the Clerk and Recorder’s office as an election and recording tech. The relevant experience for being a school board member is as a parent of four children, three of whom are attending or have attended 9-R schools. I am an active community member and speak with many other parents as well as educators about our schools and the concerns and problems facing our district.
How long have you lived in Durango?
I am a lifelong Durango resident who went through the 9-R school system from kindergarten to graduation.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
My hobbies and interests include skiing in the winter, hiking our beautiful area in the summer and supporting my children in their extracurricular activities.
Why are you running for school board?
I want to promote local involvement in our schools and policymaking decisions. We need to be fiscally responsible and creative with what we have. The “standards” that we have adopted are geared for a big city. Our community has abundant natural resources to utilize for improved educational opportunity.
What school board issues do you care most about?
A major problem with our district is the failure of the curriculum in the high school. Teachers are not properly trained to teach in the block schedule with longer class periods, causing students to lose interest in the subjects. Lower GPA scores and high dropout rate is a huge concern.
What would you most like to see change?
Improving academics in a more creative way by breaking away from the “core standards” is the first step. Test scores continue to decrease the more we implement these standards. I will continue to research alternative funding resources and ways to use what we have while improving the education of our children
Please list two ways in which you think Durango School District 9-R is improving and two ways in which you’d like to see it improve.
Are they improving? My goal is to address that question.
We need to have more local influence in the future of our district.
What do you think of the district using the traditional school calendar versus a longer or year-round calendar?
The traditional calendar has been historically adequate for our students and teachers. The school calendar is not the problem, what we do during the time we are in classes is the concern.
What do you think of Amendment 66?
I am not a supporter. The tax increase is extreme in a still shaky economy. The students of district 9-R will not see enough of the money. We need local control to improve our children’s education, and I believe that taxpayers would be supportive if they were guaranteed that their money was being spent locally.
How would you propose ensuring teachers are effective?
Teacher effectiveness is suffering from federal and state mandates that take away from creativity and forces them to “teach to a test”. Every school has a PTO; parents in these organizations would readily accept the challenge to evaluate the educators in charge of their children.