Answers to submitted questions:
|1. What will be your primary role as an ASD board member? Who do you represent and how will you represent them?||I will represent the parents to the administration – not represent the administration to the parents. Two roles of the ASD Board are to provide an independent review of school policies and to provide checks-and-balances through oversight. The board should provide feedback from a variety of community perspectives, and represent the voice of parents in forming school policy.
But the most important role of the board is leadership – driving towards excellence in education. This role cannot be delegated to staff.
|2. What is the best level of control over education?||The School Community Council should have a stronger voice in each school. I have a specific plan to strengthen the voice of parents in the school, which can be read on my website at www.KirbyGlad.com.The role of the public school is to support, not replace, the responsibility of parents in the education of their children.
The government closest to the people gives the best result. The State of Utah has a role to play in ensuring that students across the state are not disadvantaged by their location. The school district ensures a competitive, consistent curriculum; high standards of hiring and promotion; and sound policies throughout the district.
The federal government should have no role in education whatsoever. Our school board members should be voicing our concerns about this. It is a matter of leadership.
|3. How would you vote to pay for major capital expenditures?||How we pay for capital expenditures is not as important as whatcapital expenditures we pay for.I have consulted with a licensed architect who has designed and built schools who tells me we could be spending 10% less on buildings. That money could go toward reducing class size.
This savings would come by removing the emphasis on distinctive buildings, and focusing more on attractive but simple, and serviceable buildings. The LDS Church provides a great example of this policy in the building of their chapels.
Payment for building expenses should stay in local control at the district level so that voters who pay the bill have a strong voice.
Regarding pay-as-you-go, the situation is like buying a house; it is better if one can afford to pay cash, but if not, you can’t really wait 30 years while you save the money.
There is one advantage to the bonding process – it gives voters a direct voice in the decision to spend.
|4. What is ASD is doing well?||We need to learn how to be pleased with the positive aspects of ASD while not yet being satisfied.
There are areas of greatness in ASD, and some schools are being very effective because they involve parents to a high degree.We have dedicated and hardworking parents, students, and faculty, and terrific things do happen in the lives of students.
We are making progress in several academic areas.
ASD also does very well with financial management and economies of scale.
|5. Where do you think ASD could improve?||There are many areas where the board needs to exercise increased leadership, especially in the area of increasing parental involvement and public frankness about where our academics stand in comparison to other areas with a similar demographic.Our test scores are not where they should be, yet the public message from the board continues to be “everything is fine- don’t worry, be happy.”
The board could listen much better to the community. The current “feedback system”, implemented by the board, filters out negative feedback. For example, as a board member I would have District Community Council members ( who are supposed to give feedback to the board) be elected by the schools they represent, rather than be appointed by board members as they are now. That way they would be more representative of parents than of board members who appoint them.
Another example of this filtering was seen during the introduction of Investigations math several years ago. Parents knew right away it was not implemented well, but the “feedback system” failed to listen. It wasn’t until years later that board members admitted that mistakes had been made and then took steps to correct it. Years of damage was done in math instruction.
I would also propose whistle-blower protection policies that would protect any employee who brings forward information about waste, management problems, or negative feedback about policies. There is no such protection currently and most would remain silent rather than put their job at risk.
The board should exercise proactive leadership – not just passive oversight. The incumbent has voted over 647 times in open Board meetings. She has never recorded a vote against an administration proposal.
As a board member I would provide an independent review of proposals, and include the parent perspective in school policy. And I would be a voice for leadership towards academic excellence.
|6. Is your schedule open and flexible enough to allow for the considerable time required to study the issues and do you intend to consult with your constituents in town hall meetings or through electronic media?||Community service is one of my priorities. Those who have worked with me in other volunteer positions know that I put in the time needed to do the job well.You can publish my cell number ( 801 376 2050 ), and email Kirby@KirbyGlad.com, and I’ll be participating in many open forums and discussion. My website at www.KirbyGlad.com will continue to feature current articles and issues.|
|7. Where do you stand on Common Core?||Losing control of our curriculum to an out-of-state committee is a huge mistake. We do need a high standard, but it needs to be our standard.
As a board member I would be a strong voice for keeping control over what we teach our children.
|8. Free market advocates believe competition improves the end product. Do you believe ASD needs to do more to foster competition and if so, what additional competitive measures would you advocate over what ASD is already doing?||Competition makes everything better. I made that statement to a liberal friend of mine who replied “we wouldn’t want competition for the police or the military would we?” I told him he made my point for me. Those agencies DO have competitors which make them better – criminals and enemies!Ten percent of the students within the ASD district boundaries chose to attend a charter, private, or home school. This is the highest percentage in the state.
The ASD Board should be asking themselves ‘why does this 10% spend more time and money on other educational options rather than use our free services?’ Only when the board and administrators will honestly ask that question will we have taken the first real step toward improvement.
We need to collaborate more with other education pathways. As a board member I would be willing to dialogue with other education providers about putting their facilities in areas where ASD is overcrowded, instead of fighting with ASD for students in areas of low enrollment.
|9. Do you believe organizations or curriculum should be allowed on campus that encourages things like abortion, non-age appropriate sex education, the gay life style, anti-Christian/atheist/humanist ideology, anti-American propaganda, etc?||Of course not. These have no place in school.The mission of our schools is to educate students to ensure the future of our republic, our state, and our way of life. We parents have community values that have proven to be successful in Utah – socially, economically, and in every way. Values like liberty, self-reliance, personal responsibility, sacrifice, and hard work. These are not the values of California, Massachusetts, social reformers, or of a curriculum committee in some other state. These are Utah valley values, and that is the framework in which we should be teaching students.
As a school board member, I would be strong voice in representing the values of our community.
|10. There is a trend in elementary and secondary education to provide meals, childcare, health services, and life counseling, in addition to the three R’s. Do you believe these additional social services to be the proper role of public education and how will you vote on such issues?||Schools should focus on services related to student education. We have limited resources which we need to employ in fulfilling our education duties.Other social issues are the prevue of community organizations and, as a last resort, safety-net programs already provided by other agencies.
There are many demands from outside the school to provide other services. Our board should be exercising leadership in defending us from such encroachments.