Academy School District 20
Candidates are listed in the order they appear on the ballot.

KARIN REYNOLDS

  • Candidate Information

    E-Mail: electkarinreynolds@gmail.com Website: electkarinreynolds.org Phone:719-596-4517 Education: Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership Occupation: Educational Consultant

  • Why are you running for school board and what makes you the best candidate

    District 20 is focused on providing all children with an excellent education that results in academic achievement and growth, and a future that will serve our country and the global community well. It is imperative that we continue to serve our children, support the educators who serve them, partner with stakeholders, and grow together so that our community remains one of excellence. I have served public education in a variety of roles for 36 years; this expertise will serve the Board well as we continue to keep our priority, our children’s education, at the forefront of all decision-making.

  • What are the most pressing challenges for your district this year and how will you address them?

    Over time, educational systems and the communities that they serve have experienced changing social, economic, and political landscapes; educators have increasingly been called upon to serve children and communities in myriad ways. We must continue to rise to this challenge while we advocate for and ensure student achievement, public school funding, and student safety. As we meet legal mandates, we must continue to focus on our community's values and aspirations for the children that we serve. We do this with sound policy governance, transparent dialogue, collaboration with all stakeholders, and proactive, long-term planning, all resulting in student engagement and growth.

  • How will you address the effect of reduced public school funding resulting from the imposed “negative factor?”

    Because, after years of cuts, it is difficult to identify additional cuts or reallocations that would not impact student support, capital assets, transportation, and programming all while managing teacher shortages and compliance with mandates, there must be a collaborative effort among district leadership, the school board, and professional organizations to advocate with law and policy makers at the State and Federal levels. Ultimately, leaders across the state need to engage with communities to learn what they are willing to give up or to pay more to keep. Meanwhile, we must continue to align scarce resources with our aspirations for students

  • What is your position on public school choice? Should taxpayer dollars be used for private school choice?

    While I am opposed to using taxpayer dollars for private school choice, I am in favor of public school choice that empowers parents and students to select schools that best meet their needs within a public education system. District 20 and other districts across the state provide robust choice process that provide such opportunities for students.

  • What steps should be taken to acknowledge the rights of LGBTQ students and create inclusive learning environments?

    “Every student of this school district shall have equal educational opportunities through programs offered in the school district regardless of race, color, ancestry, creed, sex, sexual orientation (which includes transgender), religion, national origin …” (District 20 policy JB). To ensure that the spirit of the policy is embraced for LGBTQ students and all others mentioned, curriculum and student evaluation processes must be reviewed continually for discriminatory bias, students and staff must be provided training to identify and address discrimination as well as to support and understand one another, and students must be provided access to all programs and activities.

  • What role should the arts play in public education?

    Public education has a responsibility to address the needs of the whole child. The arts allow for self-expression, self-reflection, and creativity that is crucial both for the development of our youth and for the well-being of the staff who serve them. To that end, arts is integral to public education and as important as any other academic offerings and opportunities that we provide to students.

  • Considering the frequency of youth suicides recently, how can your district better meet the social/emotional needs of students?

    Addressing the social/emotional needs of our students is one of the most important things that we must do. The district must be purposeful about planning for the needs of students as we recognize the many pressures and challenges which our students face daily. Only when social/emotional needs are addressed can students fully engage in the classroom and lead full lives; therefore, the district staff, mental health teams, outside experts, and parents must partner to learn and respond together as we develop sound programming to identify risk factors and provide students with strategies to appropriately manage emotions, challenges, and stressors.

  • How is your district responding to reported hate incidents? What specific changes would you suggest?

    Administrative policy addresses a student code of conduct as well as response to hate and bullying incidents. Nevertheless, policy is not always enough as students need to be frequently reminded about expectations and consequences for behaviors that harm their peers, whether emotionally or physically. If such behaviors occur, response needs to be swift, consistent, and supportive of the victim. We need to spend more time educating our students about hate crimes and bullying and empower them to report and respond to such incidents when they see them happen to others or when they happen to themselves.

  • How should your district ensure a religiously neutral learning environment that respects all students? Do current district policies adequately address religious expression, intelligent design, and holiday celebrations?

    District policies are in place to address these areas. Specifically, we must remember that students are learning both about themselves and the world around them, so it is imperative that the staff be diligent about instructing in an objective and respectful manner, but without hesitation to allow students to engage in dialogue about the many religious beliefs and philosophies in our world. When done with unconditional positive regard for all individuals and with a focus on an approved instructional program that does not limit such discussions and learning, students will grow to honor their own beliefs and those of others.

THOMAS LAVALLEY

  • Candidate Information

    E-Mail: lavalleyd20@gmail.com Website: lavalleyd20.com Phone: (719) 651-0916 Education: BS in Engineering Mechanics from US Air Force Academy-1982 Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering New Mexico State-1989 Occupation: Airline pilot

  • Why are you running for school board and what makes you the best candidate?

    No job is more important for this generation than to train up the next. I am passionate about the education of our nation's future leaders. It is vital to our community. We need sound, serious oversight in D-20. I have served on the board of The Classical Academy for 3 years; 2 years as chair. I taught mathematics at The Air Force Academy and been a substitute teacher. I raised 4 children in the district. No one has my unique background. I will bring this experience to D-20. It is a very good district. I will help make it better.

  • What are the most pressing challenges for your district this year and how will you address them?

    The suicide problem is devastating and there are no easy solutions. District 20 has excellent teachers, administrators, parents, and some of the best students in the state. However, a large percentage of our students are not proficient on standardized tests. Is this due to poor tests? High opt out rates? Poor curricula? A combination? I don't know but I intend to find out. We also have a great opportunity with the passage of a $230 million bond to build several new schools and upgrade existing facilities. We need strong oversight to insure the money is well spent.

  • How will you address the effect of reduced public school funding resulting from the imposed “negative factor?”

    Public schools in Colorado have been dealing with the effects of the negative factor since the Great Recession. The state simply does not have the money in the budget to reduce the negative factor which is approaching $1 billion per year. We need to accept that reality. Fortunately, D-20 has been able to maximize their mill levy override to help offset the reduction in per pupil revenue caused by the negative factor. I believe the district by and large has been frugal with the taxpayers’ money and that needs to continue. We are in a good financial position.

  • What is your position on public school choice? Should taxpayer dollars be used for private school choice?

    I believe that parents know what is best for their children and I am a strong proponent of choice in education be that charters, Aspen Valley type options, vocational training, etc. Fortunately D-20 provides many options. This needs to continue and possibly expand. We need to have a conversation on choice. I support parents who choose secular or religious private schools for their children. And they deserve some consideration when it comes to the manner in which education is funded. Legislative options may include education savings accounts, tax credit for parents who choose private education, or other options.

  • What steps should be taken to acknowledge the rights of LGBTQ students and create inclusive learning environments?

    I believe that all students should be treated fairly and with compassion. The rights of all students need to be respected including the right to privacy.

  • What role should the arts play in public education?

    I believe the arts are just as important in the education of our children as Math, Science, English, and other core disciplines. We must foster a love of music, art and theater in our children. Our communities become weak when fine art is not appreciated. In fact, I believe a lack of art appreciation has contributed to a coarsening of our culture. We need the arts!

  • Considering the frequency of youth suicides recently, how can your district better meet the social/emotional needs of students?

    District 20 has been devastated by suicide in the last few years. There are many contributing factors including social media and bullying but solutions are evasive. Certainly we need to educate our teachers and administrators to be able to look for signs of depression in our kids. Schools can play an important role in educating parents to help them spot early signs of trouble. Students must be taught to look for signs of trouble in their friends and themselves. I believe the district has done a great deal regarding this terrible problem. We must always be open to do more.

  • How is your district responding to reported hate incidents? What specific changes would you suggest?

    I do not believe there is a large problem with hate incidents in D-20 and I believe the discipline policies currently in place are thoughtful and appropriate.

  • How should your district ensure a religiously neutral learning environment that respects all students? Do current district policies adequately address religious expression, intelligent design, and holiday celebrations?

    It is not appropriate to have religious instruction taught by our public school teachers during school hours. That should not be controversial. But students still have rights when they are in school and districts should not stop students from religious expression as long as it does not disrupt the learning environment or offend other students. We need to ensure schools do not go overboard to sanitize holidays. If kids want to talk about Hanukkah, Ramadan or Christmas during a speech or show and tell, let them.

WILLIAM H. TEMBY

  • Candidate Information

    E-Mail: willtemby4d20@gmail.com Website: www.willtemby4d20.com Phone: (303) 945 9876 Education: B.S., University of Massachusetts-Amherst Occupation: Managing Partner and Owner, Apprentice Personnel

  • Why are you running for school board and what makes you the best candidate?

    There is nothing more important to a country than having an educated population. Having access to a quality, tuition-free public education system such as ASD20 is important to our children. They represent this country’s future citizens and workforce talent. As a parent of five children in ASD20 for 23 consecutive years, I understand the breadth and complexity of the district and the Board of Education’s (BOE) governing role. My work on the $230 million bond citizens committee, District Accountability Committee, Growth and Capital Needs Committee and school accountability committees and numerous regional boards make me qualified for the BOE.

  • What are the most pressing challenges for your district this year and how will you address them?

    Maintaining high and relevant student achievement is a continuing challenge in most school districts and must be a major priority for ASD20. I will work closely with district leadership to make sure that ASD20 has a voice with the Colorado Department of Education relative to appropriate standardized testing. I will also support administration in the area of recruiting and compensating the most qualified faculty possible. Maintaining facilities in a 60+ year old district would normally be a challenge. Fortunately, 60% of the district’s voters approved a $230 million bond issue for capital and IT infrastructure needs in November 2016.

  • How will you address the effect of reduced public-school funding resulting from the imposed “negative factor?”

    The ASD20 finance team has recognized and anticipated the “Negative Factor” from the state legislature for the past several years. It also has a clear understanding of the tough job that our legislators have in dealing with Amendment 23 and the confluence of the TABOR and Gallagher Amendments. ASD20 is a good steward of its resources and makes a priority resources being first-directed to classroom delivery and the safety and security of its students and faculty. The Board of Education (BOE) is a policy governance board. It must ensure that the district anticipates funding issues and lives within its means.

  • What is your position on public school choice? Should taxpayer dollars be used for private school choice?

    Colorado is an open enrollment state. Statutorily, every one of Colorado’s 178 school districts must take in a choice student, from outside or inside their district, if there is a projected open seat in a school. Per pupil funding for that student comes with that student. It is in the best interest of any school district to fill projected open seats to maximize the funding of the district to support its programs and to defray expenses. I am currently evaluating and researching data to form an opinion about the value and consequences of directing public dollars toward private school education.

  • What steps should be taken to acknowledge the rights of LGBTQ students and create inclusive learning environments?

    ASD20 is a progressive and welcoming school district. My five children who have attended and currently attend ASD20 schools generally believe that all individuals should be and are treated and accepted equally. It would be naïve to state that there isn’t immature and sad behavior exhibited at times between school-age kids, but ASD20 does not accept this behavior towards any student. The learning environment is already inclusive. If any student has individual educational needs, then the district addresses those needs formally through IEP’s and other programs.

  • What role should the arts play in public education?

    I am a huge proponent of the arts in public education. Many studies have proven that students who are involved in the arts perform better on standardized tests than those who do not get involved in the arts. My children have been involved in several programs to include band, drama and art competitions. Since ASD20 employs a site-based model, it fully supports any school that wants art programs it can afford. Some of my fondest memories from the past 23 consecutive years have been band concerts, choir recitals and plays at the seven schools my children have attended in ASD20.

  • Considering the frequency of youth suicides recently, how can your district better meet the social/emotional needs of students?

    Unfortunately, ASD20 has had to cope with the tragedy of youth suicides. It has programs is place such as Safe 2 Tell and others but knew more needed to be done. Currently, it is implementing a program called “Sources of Strength” that focuses on “upstream” prevention that involves school faculty and peers in the process. It was tested this past spring in one high school and will be implemented this school year at seven middle and high schools. This program has been recognized by several national organizations to include the Suicide Prevention Resource Center and American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

  • How is your district responding to reported hate incidents? What specific changes would you suggest?

    ASD20 does not take any incident toward a student or faculty member lightly--regardless of the type of incident. While incidents occur when you have a population of nearly 26,000 students, students do not condone or tolerate incidents of hate, bullying, etc. among one another. This self-policing helps, but the onsite administration deals with issues right away. I served on the Mountain View Middle School Accountability Committee for four years and know that they took these issues seriously. More work needs to be done from a societal and district standpoint about cyberbullying through social media.

  • How should your district ensure a religiously neutral learning environment that respects all students? Do current district policies adequately address religious expression, intelligent design, and holiday celebrations?

    Having the perspective of being an involved parent of five kids for the past 23 consecutive years, I believe ASD20 does an excellent job of understanding and practicing the separation of church and state. Further, my experience is that the district recognizes and is sensitive to the backgrounds and beliefs of its diverse population of nearly 26,000 students.

DOUG LUNDBERG

  • Candidate Information

    E-Mail: doug@lundberg.tv Website: www.lundberg.tv Phone: 719-488-0485 Education: Masters in Education Occupation: Retired School Teacher

  • Why are you running for school board and what makes you the best candidate?

    I love kids. My entire life has centered around the education of our students. I taught school for 32 years and loved it to the end. I have already served 8 years on the D20 school board and feel that I have a lot more to contribute. One of the stronger aspects of my leadership is that I can make good, common sense decisions, always based on what is best for our students.

  • What are the most pressing challenges for your district this year and how will you address them?

    Our district has always had the problem of how to address growth and maintain a high level of learning and excitement of learning with our students. Luckily, growth issues have been kept up with by our last bond issue. We are the highest achieving large school district in the state of Colorado. We must maintain the excellence and offer all our kids the finest education possible, while at the same time attracting and retaining the best teachers. This needs to happen within the limited funds that we have been given by the state of Colorado and our patrons.

  • How will you address the effect of reduced public-school funding resulting from the imposed “negative factor?”

    We have been in a “negative factor” for many years. Unfortunately, this is a yearly problem imposed by our state legislature. Our teachers, staff and patrons have always risen to the occasion and have done what’s necessary to maximize the education of our kids. That has not changed and it is my guess that it will not change in years to come. As long as our guiding question is “What is best for our children?”, we should be able to weather most of the imposed educational storms. We are very fortunate to live in a community that truly supports education.

  • What is your position on public school choice? Should taxpayer dollars be used for private school choice?

    Academy D20 has an advanced internal choice system for our students. As long as there is space available in any school, our students can apply and go to that school. The choice window has been an effective way for parents to decide where they want their children placed. We even have the largest charter school in the state of Colorado: The Classical Academy. I see no reason for taxpayer money to go to private schools when D20 offers such a variety of great choice options.

  • What steps should be taken to acknowledge the rights of LGBTQ students and create inclusive learning environments?

    We need to foster a culture of celebrating differences rather than using the differences to keep us apart. It is okay for out students to learn about each other and to come to understand each other. The world is full of people of all sorts. It is critical that we create a culture that allows us to listen to each other respectfully, while maintaining the ability to think and make decisions about our own lives.

  • What role should the arts play in public education?

    The arts are an absolutely critical part of our educational system. Just as English, Science, Social Studies and Math are important, so are arts in all the forms they take. The arts carry equal weight to traditional content classes and should be encouraged as such. For many students, the arts are what keep them coming to school. If we are going to teach the whole child, teaching the full inclusion of the arts is absolutely critical.

  • Considering the frequency of youth suicides recently, how can your district better meet the social/emotional needs of students?

    D20 has taken many important steps on this issue, including training all staff to recognize signs of depression, suicidal tendencies, and other troubles in students. The District hosted a ‘Parent Academy’ last year covering suicide prevention, including how parents can recognize signs of a depressed child. The District brought in outside experts to help with this difficult topic. Several high schools have also implemented a program called “Sources of Strength”, a student led program on hope, help and strength. In addition, the District has done extensive implementation of an emotional intelligence program. The above are positive steps toward social/emotional well-being.

  • How is your district responding to reported hate incidents? What specific changes would you suggest?

    Every school has anti-bullying programs in place, and many clubs have been formed that address this issue. In addition, Safe-to-Tell is a program that allows students to anonymously inform an adult of problems that arise. This has been particularly effective in our district and continues to allow students to report any number of situations. Character education programs have been formed in most schools that address bullying, hate and other situations that trouble youth. Individual schools have groups such as Link Crew, which work on making schools a welcoming environment for all. We need to continue to support these programs.

  • How should your district ensure a religiously neutral learning environment that respects all students? Do current district policies adequately address religious expression, intelligent design, and holiday celebrations?

    This question seems to have two prongs. When we talk about addressing religious expression and holiday celebrations, it is clear that our District allows students and staff alike the freedoms provided by our Constitution. We allow staff to use the Staff Leave Policy to celebrate religious holidays and parents can always excuse their students from school for religious reasons. As far as teaching controversial topics, D20 has policies in place. Intelligent design is a religious belief and as such does not belong in the classroom.

ERIC S. DAVIS

  • Candidate Information

    E-Mail: Info@VoteEricDavis.org Website: www.VoteEricDavis.org Phone: 719-201-9370 Education: 2 Associates Degrees and 1.5 Years @ UCCS Occupation: Entrepreneur & Small Business owner (3T Martial Arts)

  • Why are you running for school board and what makes you the best candidate?

    There are many reasons why I am running for school board, but the biggest reason is because I want my children to go through a strong school system that promotes great values, hard work, and a place to teach them to be lovers of learning. Education is the cornerstone to a great country, a great community, and a successful life. I’ve gone through a few different school systems but I graduated from district 20. I’ve seen both good and bad in the educational world and I know that, if done properly, a good school system can make a child’s life great

  • What are the most pressing challenges for your district this year and how will you address them?

    I believe the greatest issue facing our district is the suicide epidemic. It is unacceptable to me that students don’t even get a chance to actually do life because they are choosing to take their life before they even make it to graduation. I believe the biggest way to address them is to empower the community to remember that its not about the politics, it’s about the Children.

  • How will you address the effect of reduced public school funding resulting from the imposed “negative factor?”

    I believe that the greatest way to battle politics is with a community that stands together. My goal will be to unite our community in this very divisive time. My goal has always been a cultural shift toward people taking a greater responsibility in their world and with the District platform I will fight even harder for it.

  • What is your position on public school choice? Should taxpayer dollars be used for private school choice?

    I believe in the freedom of choice and with choice comes consequences and therefore owning those consequences. I also believe that competition creates excellence especially when paired with a proper reward. With all that being said I am a proponent of Charter schools paid for with Public funds and is open to anyone who applies but private school paid by the individual. And if done properly parent choices for private or home school education can be paired well with public education in which both groups get to share in the public funds.

  • What steps should be taken to acknowledge the rights of LGBTQ students and create inclusive learning environments?

    In my own personal experience I have seen LGBTQ students deal with some major difficulties in life as well as face some major challenges from their society. With that being said I do not believe that public education (under 18) is the place for these issues to be dealt with. Sexuality is a personal and not public issue that should be dealt with in private and not as an institution of the government. There is a certain age to deal with certain issues and the school system should focus on mental education of math, sciences, reading and writing.

  • What role should the arts play in public education?

    I believe that the appreciation of the arts is an important and valuable part of any civilized society. Arts are the balance and the ability to express oneself and life’s difficulties. But I also believe that there is a balance that must be found between logical sciences and the arts. We must accept that both logic (the sciences) and art are equal for a growing and expanding society and students should be trained in both.

  • Considering the frequency of youth suicides recently, how can your district better meet the social/emotional needs of students?

    Suicide is a complicated issue but a good start toward dealing with it is to allow teachers who care be able to engage without the fear of administration push back. Our teachers are afraid to get involved because of the fear of being fired for being too involved. Another area that we can do as adults is to give students hope of a bright future. Our country is acting like a family in a nasty divorce and the kids have lost hope.

  • How is your district responding to reported hate incidents?What specific changes would you suggest?

    I am unfamiliar with any major issues facing my district. However, if there were situations or issues I think they would have to be examined on a case to case basis.

  • How should your district ensure a religiously neutral learning environment that respects all students? Do current district policies adequately address religious expression, intelligent design, and holiday celebrations?

    I feel that religion does play a big part in understanding history and culture and therefore cannot be completely removed from schools, however it is not the position of government or a school system to push any religious agenda. National holidays set up through the government should be the only excused holidays anything outside of that should be dealt within the teacher, student, and parent relationship, just as if a student was sick. I believe we look at many perspectives of learning but hold to teaching the Scientific method rather than Dogma from one group or another.