If I did not post comments that politely disagreed with my positions, I would be no better than the school board club and the administration, which have a legacy of stifling opposing points of view.

This was received yesterday:

There are a lot of us parents out there who do care. Thing is, we think the path the district is on is exciting. Yes, there are missteps, but the positives outweigh the negatives.

Regarding the challengers, I don’t know much about one of them but two of them would be vastly, vastly worse than the current Board. One only sees her Newport point of view and could not care less about the rest of the less affluent district children. The other is a lawyer who is happily riding on the coattails of the more well-connected Newport candidate. Look where he has held his fundraisers and meet and greets? He waltzes right past his neighborhood school barely seeing it and sends his kids, time and money elsewhere. The third candidate who has experience with the Kaiser foundation seems ok, but the other are in it for their own motives and agendas.

The SWUN math curriculum is interesting. Those who hate it seem by and large to be from the more affluent areas. Perhaps because it is a new way of mathematical thinking and the parents don’t understand it? But dive deeper in some of the state statistics and you’ll see a more complex story. Take Adams Elementary. Year over year for 4th grade those at met/exceeds was about the same. But for 5th grade it went from 11% for the top 2 categories (met or exceed) in 2015 to 34% in 2016. For 6th grade, from 25% to 40%. Now jump to Sonora. The year to year results are all over the place. For some grades there are vast improvements, for some not. So is it truly the curriculum? The training for the curriculum? Would the district be better off offering several different choices of math curriculum based on teacher input? It is a complicated story, and from what I know of at least two of the challengers, they do not have interest in exploring that. So you’d be back to square one with your rants and raves. All things equal, I’ll take those who are at least experienced.

You are right to raise questions about what can be done to improve education inputs, experiences and outcomes across the district. But at least two of the challengers are not up to that challenge.

Steve Smith
N-MUSD Taxpayer