OKC District 2

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Candidates for OKC School Board District 2

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Rebecca BuddRebecca Budd

Bachelors of Liberal Arts, Southern Methodist University. MBA, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Graduate Studies in Applied Sociology, University of Texas at Dallas

Community Advocate and OKCPS Volunteer, April 2014 to Present

Managing Director at Navita Clinical Strategy Group, July 2012 to April 2014

Senior Director of Clinical Operations/Managing

Director, iDICT Group at TrialAdvance, August 2010 to June 2012

Marketing Consultant at SunSprout Media, LLC, June 2004 to August 2010

Senior Account Executive/Business Development Specialist at Corbett Accel Healthcare Group 2002 to 2004

Region Business Manager at Roche Laboratories, Inc., 1997 to 2002

National Account Manager (1997)/District Sales Manager (1993-1996)/Professional Rep (1992) at Roberts Pharmaceutical Corporation, 1992 to 1997

What is your vision for your school district?

My two adopted sons, Jackie and Marcus, are in 5th and 3rd grade, at the Casady School. I always thought my children would attend public schools, just like I did. But that changed when Jackie was ready to enroll in Pre-K. Our district at the time, Dallas ISD, had just cut 450 teacher positions and cut their annual budget by $90 million. I visited our neighborhood elementary school and met with the PTA. I found inexperienced leadership, many new teachers, overcrowded classrooms, and frustrated parents hosting fundraisers just to fund basics like school supplies and library books. My husband and I decided to put our sons’ needs first and enrolled them in private school. When we moved to Oklahoma City, we found OKCPS had many of the same issues as Dallas ISD. We are fortunate that we can afford private school for our children’s needs but are aware most OKCPS families do not have that option.

That is why I am running for OKCPS, District 2. I am dedicated to improving public education. My children are at private school but my heart is in public schools, as it always has been. Over the past three years, I have volunteered at Wilson and MLK Jr Elementary, as well as supported the Foundation for OKCPS and its programs. I work as a volunteer at MLK Elementary roughly 30 hours per week and have completed over 700 volunteer hours just this school year, doing everything from recruiting volunteers to soliciting donations for new iPads, to working with OKCPS Foundation to implement a music education program. I see every day how OKCPS struggles to meet the needs of its principals, teachers, staff, and students, due to understaffing, severe budget cuts and instability at the top level. It is not okay.

My goal as an Oklahoma City Public Schools Board Member is to use my 20+ year business background and my first-hand knowledge of Oklahoma City’s public school system to provide the stability needed for a conducive learning environment. I want to provide more transparency and ensure we build our budget from the bottom up, putting basic needs, like textbooks, transportation, and student safety first. Most importantly, I want to ensure all kids have a fair shot at a quality education, regardless of means.

What is your view regarding vouchers?

I support the existing program for students with disabilities, the Lindsey Nicole Henry Scholarship. I am against school vouchers and/or educational savings accounts. I am not in favor of taking tax payer funds and giving them to private entities. This program would incur significant costs to implement, oversee, and audit. Given that private schools, online-schools, and other vendors are not accountable to the state or local school districts, the potential for fraud is very high. Additionally those students in greatest needs – those with incarcerated parents, living in foster care, or in neighborhoods where the majority of residents live in poverty are the least likely to benefit. ESAs and vouchers will not fully cover all the costs of all needs for these students: transportation, full tuition at private schools, meals during the day, uniforms, extra tutoring, and other incidental costs.

What is your view regarding charter school programs?

I fully support the existing charter schools in Oklahoma City. Our city is unique from other large urban districts because OKCPS’s charter schools were born out of our community spirit and generosity. They are not part of national for-profit companies. Starting over 20 years ago, pioneering educators and community members identified specific needs within OKCPS and put in the hard work to build successful charter schools like Harding College Prep, Harding Fine Arts, John Rex Elementary, KIPP Reach, Independence Middle, Belle Isle Enterprise Middle School, Stanley Hupfeld Academy, and Santa Fe South Schools, Inc. I support new charter schools that are founded with the same principles as our existing charter schools. However, I do not support charter expansion that will negatively affect our public schools and existing charters. I feel strongly it is the Board of Education’s duty to ensure our public school system can meet the needs of all students.

What is your position on the nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education?

I was not a supporter of Betsy DeVos being confirmed for Secretary of Education. Her lack of experience in public schools was and is apparent. Now that her appointment has been confirmed, her intentions have been made clear, implementing vouchers and ESA’s. This will be paired with the upcoming Every Student Succeeds Act, which will shift accountability provisions to states. Seeing these major changes happen at the Federal level, it is even more important to me to be elected to OKCPS. I have 20+ years of business experience in managing, balancing, and implementing complex budgets to pair with my 30 hours per week in the schools and will work to ensure top-down federal policy does not negatively affect Oklahoma City Public Schools. A good school board can mitigate negative Federal policies and I will ensure our public schools are at first.

Endorsements

Oklahoma City American Federation of Teachers
Oklahoma City Metropolitan Area Realtors
Oklahoma City Federation of Classified Employees

facebook.com/RebeccaForOKCPS

www.rebeccaforschoolboard.com

 

Nick SingerNick Singer

BS Mathematics, BS Economics

Stellar DJ – Ford Audio-Video- Voices Organized in Civic Engagement -Oklahoma Education Association

What is your vision for your school district?

Every child needs a great education. One of the themes I am running on is the tension between the concepts of “we are all in this together” or “you are on your own.” I believe we are all in this together. I am concerned that OKCPS has created a few good schools and left many others behind. What I want, expect and hope for, for my own child’s education experience, is what I want to see available for all children. I want a respected and well compensated teacher in each classroom. I want music, art and physical education in each building and the ability for students of all aptitude levels and personal challenges to get whatever they need to be successful. We also need stable leadership at the top, the revolving door of superintendents must stop. I am also committed to sending my child to Monroe Elementary, a typical, diverse, higher poverty OKC elementary school. We need board members with skin in the game and the urgency of now to see things change for the better.

What is your view regarding vouchers?

I opposed any and every attempt to privatize our public education system. Public money should be used for the public good. That is our commitment to each other.

What is your view regarding charter school programs?

I have deep concerns about how charters have been deployed in OKCPS and the segregation they are creating in our community. I can respect and understand why many families choose to utilize that option given some of the alternatives but I think we need to have an honest conversation with our community about discrepancies in special education rates, mobility rates and socioeconomics between charters and traditional schools. I’ve also found through knocking more than 1,500 doors that many families share these concerns and the concern is summarized in that if their child had not made it into a charter school, that they might not have gotten a good education. That’s a systemic problem. My goal would be to bring the traditional schools up to a truly level playing field. We need to equip our neighborhood schools with the tools and resources they need to be successful instead of focusing on selecting and sorting children.

What is your position on the nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education?

I think it will be a disaster. It makes no sense to put someone in charge of large aspects of public education who wishes to see it dismantled and privatized.

www.facebook.com/nickforokc

www.nickforokc.org