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Q&A: School board member Sherri Wright

Public relations

Question: List three action items you’d undertake to guarantee the public remains informed of board decisions?

I have always tried to keep the public informed of board decisions. I speak to different organizations when asked, I am always available for questions (even in stores), my phone number is available for anyone who needs it. I am well known, and the community feels comfortable contacting me with questions.

Question: In your opinion, should the board ever meet behind closed doors? Why or why not?

The board should never meet behind closed doors unless it is an executive session. We are required to meet in executive session for personal issues, lawyer discussion, etc. When in an executive sessions, the board is not allowed to discuss anything that was said; however, the board is not allowed to vote in an executive sessions, they must vote in public.

Question: How would you reach out to engage your constituents?

When something arises that might be a hot issue, I ask the community should be involved. We have held community meetings and asked for input.

Finance

Question: In examining the district’s budget, which line items would you support for greater funding and which line items would you recommend be cut? Why?

I feel our teachers are underpaid. They are at the bottom of the income bracket, and they are working with our future. We not only need to pay them more, but show them more respect. This being said, the budget does not allow it. We have trimmed the budget until there is not much left to cut. We should not ask what else we need to cut, but what we need to do have Colorado pay the negative factor.

Question: Should board members be paid? Why or why not?

No, they should not be paid. The board should be there for the students, not for personal gain. If you serve on the board, you usually lose money, but this should be an act of love, not gain.

Question: Should property taxes be increased to better fund public education? Why or why not?

The community cannot handle an increase in property taxes. We are in an depressed economy and the community cannot handle anymore, that does not mean they do not value education, it means there is not anymore money available.

Immediate issues

Question: What should the district do with the former Montezuma-Cortez High School building?

The budget cannot handle the demolition of the school, but has been declared unsafe for school. What does the community want to do with it? All ideas are sought.

Question: In your opinion, why are district schools struggling academically, and what would you do to ensure all students succeed?

The state and federal government have decided they know more about education than the schools do. Until they stop passing laws we will continue to struggle. Parents will tell you we spend more time testing than teaching. The district is looking at how to spend more teaching vital concepts.

Question: Do you believe more days should be added to the school year? Why or why not?

There should not be more days in the school year. We do not have the proper ventilation systems in the older schools, and students cannot learn when it is extremely hot.

Biography

Question: List your expertise and/or qualifications that set you apart from other candidates.

I am a retired a teacher, was on the school board previously for 8 years, was president of San Juan Tech College for 4 years, and a CASB director for 5 years.

Question: Why are you seeking a seat on the board?

I am currently serving on the board and feel we have started changes that need to be followed through with. I want to make sure our students get the very best education possible.

Question: If elected, what would be your top three priorities?

Fiscal responsibility, student safety, meeting state standards

Looking Ahead

Question: What is the district’s most important future area of concern, and what would you do to solve that issue?

Making sure our students are academically prepared for the future.

Question: Is working and partnering with outside agencies important? Why or why not?

Working with outside agencies is important. In the days of shrinking budget we need to utilize every tool we can find.

Question: Do you support charter schools? Why or why not?

Yes, I support charter schools. When the public is not meeting a specific need they have to find the school that does. This being said, charter schools do drain the budget for the public school, this is why some do not support the charter schools.

Sherri Wright

Age: 62

Occupation: Retired

Telephone: 560 0158

Email: rsljwright@yahoo.com

Website: None

Sep 7, 2015
Meet the Re-1 school board candidates