A CRITICAL MOMENT

Sustained leadership for student success

We're going through trying times. Over the past two years, the disruption of COVID-19 has thrown boulders onto the road in front of us. Our students, families, and staff have been through the wringer with the burdens of the pandemic. Our staff members find themselves more exhausted at this point in the year than they’ve ever experienced before. Like districts across the country, we’ve got staffing shortages impacting everything from teacher planning time to buses. Supply chain issues are impacting everything from planning meals to repairing facilities. These are hard, hard times.

And: When I step back in a big-picture way to look at where we are, we are also better positioned for accelerating student success than ever before. We have incredible teachers and staff who've been more resilient than I can express. Our new strategic and equity plans lay out a clear vision of success for students -- and we’re building the practices of continuous improvement at every school to get there. We're looking closely at what we teach, and how. We're reckoning honestly with the reality that our schools work better for some students than for others, and we've taken steps to make schools more inclusive for all students. All of the challenges are still there, but when I am able to reflect on the big picture, even in these hard times, I am so optimistic about what's possible.

To meet the promise of the groundwork we've laid, we need the security of stable leadership that will be focused on a consistent vision. OCS has been plagued by constant turnover at the top for decades. Over the past 20 years, 71% of all board members served only a single term. This district has had 7 different superintendents in the past 10 years. Leadership turnover negatively impacts student achievement. And these decades of turnover have meant pivot after pivot in direction. It’s not healthy. Staff begin to feel like they’ve got whiplash. Culture suffers. And bottom line: It stops us from getting the momentum we need to make progress for kids.


This is why I'm seeking re-election. Because we need sustained leadership for student success.