It’s time to focus on students in Jeffco – Vote Miller & Applegate

Chalkbeat has recently reported on the fund raising gaps in the Jeffco School Board races

When I see contributions such as these I always wonder why they were made. Obviously the teachers’ unions see some benefit for the nearly $50,000 they’ve donated so far to Chavez-Lee and Schooley.

For the past 4 years, the Board has been controlled by 5 members who have accepted large amounts of Teacher Union money during their campaigns. The Board made it clear that teacher salaries are a priority and teachers subsequently have seen increases totaling 20%. To finance those increases we have seen department level cuts, a tax increase and a school closing.

However, over the past 2 years student achievement and growth are substantially down. 54% of 3rd graders don’t meet state literacy expectations. 65% of 6th graders don’t meet state math expectations. Overall District academic growth is below the state average. That’s atrocious! Kids are suffering – falling behind and never catching up.

So, while the current Board members have accepted union contributions and focused on raising teacher pay, they seem to have forgotten the real reason the school District exists – to educate students and prepare them for a productive life. Students don’t need more of the same.

It’s time to get some independent thinkers and voices on the school Board. The Board needs members who will make it their priority to focus on students and raising student achievement and growth, something that has been grossly lacking over the past 4 years. Miller and Applegate will bring that much needed diversity of thought and opinion into the Board room.

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