A few months ago, my son who is in the 10th grade came home with 3 missing grades on his progress report. I immediately went into investigation mode. I began to ask questions as to how this could be. As any concerned parent would do, I went to the school to try to get some answers. I waited patiently to speak with the counselor who told me that my problem was for the administration. I then proceeded to fill out the standard forms and was told that my concern would be handled in 2 days. Well, 34 days later is when I actually got a call and an appointment to meet with the Principal. I was disappointed by how understaffed our schools are in Clayton County and how that is our new normal. I started to think about the multiplier effect of how my one child is missing 3 teachers and how this narrative negatively affects thousands of our students across the district and contributes to our unacceptable graduation rates.
We only graduate 73% of our students from high school in Clayton County and that makes me angry! I also realize that I am positioned perfectly to help make a change. I currently have 2 children in school in Clayton County and my family lives here on purpose. I invested in this community as a business owner in 2012 and my husband currently works for the Clayton County Library System. I spent over 3 years of my professional life in academic advisement at Georgia State University. I have learned through my professional experiences that success in school is found in robust social supports and wrap around services. These networks of resources and partnerships is what helps students excel. The foundation of education is human relationships and I know first-hand how brilliant people can be if you give them the support and love that they need to thrive.
I believe in my heart that every child is entitled to a quality education that is Consistent, Accessible, Relevant, Engaging, and Sustainable. These ideas challenged me to want to be a part of the solution. I CARE ABOUT EDUCATION and I know that it is our single best economic development tool. I am launching my campaign to serve on the Clayton County School Board for District 5 on Monday, March 7, 2016. I hope that I have the support of my professional network as I try to advocate for smart policies that serve ALL of our students well. I refuse to believe that in 2016, that we can not graduate 100% of our students from high school and I am determined to prove to everyone that we can.