Table 2 Summary-2016 BOE Candidate Forum
Vicky Cutroneo - first
Q: What’s your biggest concern? What do you want to change?
Budget – don’t have money for this-that
“don’t have enough money for for Chinese”
Not true, priority problem
Teachers can’t teach such a huge class of 30
Q: Relation problems?
A: We need a closer relationship with people
Problems need to be shared
More formal interaction
Never heard of some problems
Q: Why budget audit?
By law, have enough money but wasting it
Spending on wrong things
Not using data for decisions
Q: Budget provided by taxpayers – cut?
Cut to what asked for, but still got more. Budget not cut, additional budget cut
Q: Who is superintendent? Decisions?
No checks and balances, superintendent makes decisions
Everything approved thru central office, must be approved
What to tell parents must be approved
Q: Do you disagree with anything of Christina
Approach to board is collaborative
Don’t have to agree on everything, different people
Candidates approach challengers as others
Collaborate and get along despite competition
Hostile interactions right now, BoE bad reputation right now
Q: Do you approve of the superintendent?
I don’t approve of the process of the superintendent position
Everything was great when she wasn’t a part of it, her kids were good and happy
Q: Do you support the Chinese Lunar calendar New Year holiday?
She did not last year, following law
Convo with Asian student
How much having an off day meant
Connection to culture
Not such a big deal as a holiday w/out school off
Changed her thoughts
Now considering, not sure
Q: Why are we losing teachers?
Work conditions bad
Too many students
Conditions all time low
Pay low, despite budget
Teachers afraid to talk for themselves
Favors good teachers
Christina Delmont-Small – sixth
Q: What sets you apart from other candidates?
I advocated a lot, have a lot of perspective
Ask questions about whole county
Need to understand whole challenge
Solution involves whole problem
Q: How do you get more people involved?
Information should be provided with infrastructure
Info should go us to board, not the other way around
Inform community to answer questions
Q: Decision making is a poor process, who made decision?
Agree – should decisions enhance the experience of students?
World language needs to be face to face
Q: How do you ensure communication with community?
More ways to do so
People called me
Representatives on board?
Things hidden – by design?
Communicate absences, holiday policies to teachers and students
Mavis Ellis - fifth
Q: What do you want to change? What are challenges? How would you try to overcome them?
Culture of BoE – transparency to people who elected
Superintendent and staff responsive to BoE
Board members don’t get answers
Staff don’t respond to questions
Expectations need to be set
Q: What’s your opinion on Lunar New Year?
I’m in support of students off in Lunar New Year
Governor needs to know
Locals should have more freedom regarding calendar
I am supporting
Look at other options for other off days too
Q: Would you support stronger Chinese learning system?
Language teaching shouldn’t be online
Q: How do you make sure issues are communicated with community?
Share with parents, reach out
Many not worried if not affecting their child
P: Different levels of education
GT programs need to be pushed forward, but for the right kids
Kids who are in need should be supported
Q: How is the superintendent doing?
People owe jobs to superintendent
Holds lots of power
Approval rate 20%
Parents go elsewhere for information on board
Q: Are you going to make strong leadership to overlook board?
I don’t give up, collaborate
Q: What is diversity?
We are different race yet american
Equal opportunity for all
Robert Miller - fourth
Q: What do you want to change if elected? Key problems:
Honesty – can’t have good relationships with honesty, public and official relationship
Audit – don’t want to add money if you don’t know where it’s going
Questions not answered
Inviting input – teacher’s concerns silenced or they get in trouble
Input should be used for decisions
Explain decisions - people understand, don’t get angry, helps relationship ^^^
Instruction – more time needs to be added to the teachers
Testing wasting time
Teacher evaluation wastes time and money, doesn’t help
Administration should serve teachers, not the other way around
Give 1 on 1 time
Levels of education need to be distanced
Q: Do you support Lunar New Year?
This year is good
Not allowed to designate holidays if not instructionally based
Legal reasons need to be based on if schools can operate effectively
Professional day moved to coincide with Lunar New Year, students off
Can’t promise committee is going to carry through
Chinese people should persuade board
Q: Shouldn’t we base decisions on survey results?
Two options - school opens before labor day or professional days moved
Q: How much time and resource allocated to special education and free lunch for low income students?
Issues with money taken from Special Ed, but hard to decide exactly
Q: How does economic situation affect achievement?
Huge effect – if students take private lessons, different scenario
Both can have experiences but tutoring/instruction affects students differently
Don’t make too different experiences between schools
Opportunities shouldn’t depend on financial issues
High end students should be given opportunity to excel, but low end shouldn’t be disadvantaged
Janet Siddiqui - third
Q: How can we trust you to improve with all the current issues? Transparency issues
Communication breakdowns yet improvements
Systems replaced over summer, hoco health dept. aware
Quality assessment going on, good thing
Q: One earlier candidate mentioned teachers aren’t so valued anymore – do you agree? What are you going to do?
Hearing mixed things, mostly resources
Input is either specific or union, been at table
Teachers have a voice right now, always have had a voice
Q: What is the major reason for teachers leaving?
Retire, maternity, other employment, family reasons
P: Teacher leaving rate is not higher
300 new per year, 9k applications
People want to come to HoCo with great students and parents
Q: How do we select survey companies?
Do you support report?
Good value, not everything
Board decides over 25k$ decisions
Q: Would you support Lunar New Year a professional day?
I would like staff off
Challenges religious or cultural holidays
I support student day off
Q: Elementary Chinese class created carefully, abolished quickly – if you are elected, would you consider resume this program?
I regret that Chinese people did not know about this
Any programs we go should be desired by community
P: We need someone to initiate it, and if you could we would love it
Q: Some students perform poor due to lack of resources – is race a consideration for support or
We look at everything – have had race specific support groups
English learning program is funded
Q: If you were elected, what changes for our community you would want?
Later school start times in April for mid/high school 8:15
Anti-bullying coming up
Kirsten Coombs – second
Q: Why are we losing teachers? So much budget
Not just about money
Pays teachers more yet less enjoyment
Educators felt part of community
Non-cash benefits outweighed more money
Now teachers told what to do rather than input
No longer enjoying, not asking teachers
If you don’t have something positive to say, don’t say anything
Moved schools, additional burdens, given unlikeable jobs
Q: What caused the change?
Q: New teachers better?
Older teachers could mentor old ones
Long term ones have experience
Pushed out because voices unheard
Experience voiced in class, told to be quiet
Theory - A child in first grade should have the same teacher throughout the day
Now they’re moving, not developmentally appropriate
Need stability, security, consistency
Develop teacher relationship
Educators knowing it’s wrong are asked to do it
Q: Who uses elementary models? Kids moving class?
Fifth grade moving, appropriate
First grade – not
Q: If math class better than English, prefer attend higher level class?
Not about level of reading/math
Pro cons different
Q: What do you think about moving?
Moving for SS English, math science, not moving every time
Transition time lost
Basically middle school
Q: Parents don’t get much input from testing
Young age – people don’t know, results need to communicate parents
Trying to figure out what test scores meant, what she needs to work on
Who cares about parcc, SAT!
Not trustable, students study for SAT and disregard parcc
I would look at what’s important
Too much things, increase class size?
Kill gallup poll, millions
Not enough support for why it matters, I’ll ask questions instead of voting
Q: If you were elected, would you support Chinese New Year as a professional day?
Yes, but opinion changed because governor Hoagen
Tighter time frame
Nervous about after labor day
Factoring spring break
Easter Monday should not be holiday
I do not support Hoagen
Calendar should be up to local communities
Washington county starts earlier because snow days
We should be able to decide for ourselves
Hoco rich – people want vacation, ocean city?
Q: Used to be in classroom Chinese class in high school, now reduced – would you look at resuming issues?
Elementary established program after a lot of votes and establishment
Killed by one person
Look at assessment results
How can remote language teaching be positive?
Q: Some students don’t perform well because economic status, if you are poor and don’t have resource affects performance, not race – Do you support affirmative action?
We need best educators
Better educators > diversity
Classrooms need diversity, but need to be the right people
Kids need right start in kindergarten
Q: Opinion on transgender? Use any restroom they claim to be – changing room?
Transgender access to single use restroom
Single space with locks better than two separate restrooms
Bullying is concern
Q: Many things happening because Foose – how can board change that?
She’s employee of the board not other way around
Given special perks to others to get them to feel with her – five others agree to her
Q: How can you change it?
I will be one vote