My priorities are:
Strong Neighborhood Schools
Each public school in Edina should represent the best Edina has to offer. I believe that strong neighborhood schools create strong community partnerships, and can help create a positive school culture across the entire District. I have been incredibly pleased with the educational offerings for my children at Cornelia Elementary School, and want to help continue to provide these opportunities across Edina Public Schools.
Edina Public Schools are doing great things, and I’d like to help them continue that work.
Keeping Class Sizes Manageable
Our most important resource is our children, and we need to best support the people who are working with those children each and every school day. We need to continue to prioritize keeping as many teachers in the classroom as we can.
In February, board members estimated that the district would have a $4 million budget shortfall in 2023-2024. In June, the board continued the Budget Reduction, Reallocation, and Revenue Generation process, and will continue it this fall. Difficult decisions will need to be made, and I support the district’s aim to keep cuts away from the classroom when possible. I have reported on several different budget reduction and adjustment committees, and know how to seek out and bring new voices to the table, so that all perspectives are being considered.
Attracting Edina Kids to Attend Edina Schools
We have great schools in Edina; it is the very reason my family and many others chose to move here. We even attract many students from outside our city’s borders to attend Edina Public Schools. That is great for our district.
However, we also lose many students through open enrollment, which in turn can hurt the district’s finances due to our state education funding model. There are few ways the district can increase revenue, but one is increased enrollment through per pupil funding. Higher enrollment results in the ability to hire more teaching staff, and offer more electives and options for students.
We have great stories to tell in Edina, from our students who become National Merit Scholars in the classroom, to our students who become Minnesota State High School League Champions on the field, court, rink and stage. We can offer children the best of opportunities here in our Edina Public Schools, let’s work to keep more of our neighbors in green, white, and yellow.
Continuing the District’s Strategic Plan
Edina Schools has a strong vision in its 2020-27 Strategic Plan. The school board needs collaborators to continue to fine tune this vision, and to best support our administrators, teachers, and students on this path. I feel very strongly about the district’s core values of academic, operational and professional excellence; equity in learning; family and community inclusion; and I would like to help continue this work. We need to continue our efforts to close the achievement gap, and ensure ALL of our learners are reaching their utmost potential.
Edina Public Schools has a strategic plan that provides clear direction, and is closely tied to board action and recommendations. This provides clear values and roles as we work to implement these long-term goals. I’ve worked with school districts that haven’t included that connective tissue, and in my opinion, it hampers the effectiveness of the plan.
The future of Edina Public Schools is bright.
Informed, and Respectful Governance
We can reach our best heights as a school board when we bring varied viewpoints and experiences to the table, but we can’t collaborate if we’re attacking each other with bad faith talking points. We all have the same goal: Doing the best for our kids. I believe in respectful, informed governance. I want to work with our school board members, not against them.