The Center for Arizona Policy has provided a list of questions about the position of school board and education. I am including both the questions and my answers for all to read. I have also provided extra comments for most questions.
Question 1: Providing parents the option of choosing phonics instruction for all K-3rd grade Students? .I support
I will need more information on what phonics you are referring to, however phonics are necessary to teach the children how to speak properly. Phonics instruction has long been a part of education. Many times they have been referred to as speech class.
Question 2: Allowing students to express their religious views in the classroom to the same extent that students may express non-religious views? I support
We need to allow the children to pray if they wish. The founders provided bibles to the classroom to be used; the students were expected to read from them. In the fifties people went from school to school to teach the bible and what the various passages meant. We need to get back to this activity.
Question 3: Continue to use AIMS as a test required for graduation? I support
The AIMS test needs to be substantially improved.
Question 4: Allowing parents to opt their children out of activities or lessons they find offensive to their personal, moral, or religious beliefs? I support
Parents need to take control of the instruction of their children. Parents need to be fully involved in their children’s education. This is much easier said than done, but parents must be encouraged to be more involved.
Question 5: Increasing state and local taxes to provide more funding for schools and school facility Projects? I oppose
Giving more and more money to the schools is NOT the answer. The money needs to be spent wisely. The money must be spent in the classroom, not in administration. The teachers should not be required to fund the classroom from their own pockets. We do need to have a central buying system in the state to allow the districts to save money when purchasing text books. Each school needs to be locally controlled. The principal needs to be given greater responsibility for the operation of their school.
Question 6: Requiring signed permission from a parent before a student may participate in sex education classes? I support
Sex education should NOT be taught in the schools. Condoms must NOT be provided by the schools. This only promotes the sexual promiscuity among the students. Abstinence must be taught in the schools and at home. Morals must be taught both in the schools and at home. The Ten Commandments must be displayed prominently in each school.
Question 7: Allowing parents to use tax credits, vouchers, or education savings accounts to enable children to attend any public, private, or home school?
The money for education of the children MUST be tied to the child. It must be spent in the classroom with the teacher having a prominent say in how it is used. It must be tied to the classroom and not the school building. The teacher must have an incentive to spend the money properly. The teachers must be provided a merit compensation plan that reflects the teacher’s ability to teach the children properly. The merit plan must be able to reflect that the student actually learned the subject(s).
Question 8: Requiring full-day kindergarten for all students? I oppose
All day kindergarten is ok, if the parent pays for the extra 2nd half. The schools are not a babysitting arena and shall not be treated as such.
Question 9: Requiring abstinence until marriage curriculum where sex education classes are taught in public schools?
A curriculum on abstinence is abhorrent. Just say no is the correct teaching. Teaching by example is what the children see and need to be exposed to. Morals must be taught both in the schools and at home. The 10 commandments must be used as an example.
Question 10: Allowing home-schooled students to compete in interscholastic activities?
Home school children need to be allowed to participate in interscholastic activities. They must be allowed because their parents already pay for the activities in their taxes. They should be allowed to get some of the benefit of what they pay for.
Question 11: Requiring a certain percentage of the school district’s budget to be spent in the classroom, as opposed to for administration?
This will be taken care of by attaching the money directly to the child and classroom, then we will not need a new law to specify how much money is spent in the classroom.
Question 12: Promoting acceptance of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender lifestyles through school instruction? I oppose
The children will get enough of this training on TV, movies and just life. It does not need to be taught in school.
Question 13: Requiring that parents receive a list of all student clubs, activities, and extracurricular opportunities available at the school? I support
Question 14: Presenting competing and alternative theories regarding the origin of life when evolution is taught in science classes? I support
This is necessary and should be taught by having the text book for evolution and having Rabbis’, preachers and priests provide the instruction for the creation side of the argument. We have a serious problem now where Islam and Sharia law is being taught by schools occasionally. Dearborn Michigan and Wellesley Middle School in Boston are good examples. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7-I9Qp3d4Y&feature=player_embedded. We need to provide a balanced view.
Question 15: Prohibiting the use of school district funds paid to associations or other organizations for political activities?
Tax money should never be used to promote political activities. If teachers wish to lobby for a cause in a legislature then they need to take a day off without pay. However, if the teachers get a two thirds ok from the parents in advance, to lobby with pay, then they can use a vacation day for this effort.