Aisd_forumMany thanks to the 5 School Board Candidates for participating in last night’s AISD candidate Forum at Gullett. They are running for non-paid positions that oversee a school district with a budget of over $750 million and make decisions about complex issues affecting diverse interests with an impact on the future – our children. You have got to wonder why they do it and at the same time commend them for their willingness to serve.

Vince Torres (Place 4), Ed Leo and Annette LoVoi (Place 8), and Karen Dulaney Smith and Alberto
C. Gonzalez
(Place
9) participated in the Forum moderated by former ANA president David
Mintz. Probably the greatest value of the forum was the exposure it
gave the 20 or so in attendance to the candidates and issues facing
AISD. It was a good  opportunity to meet and ask questions. There was
no debate. And there’s probably little debate on the caliber and
committment of these individuals seeking a spot on the board.

Members of the forum addressed questions concerning high school
redesign and pre-K programs,  importance of managable class sizes,
getting attention when your child has special needs, the challenge of
gaining consensus among such a diverse group of interests accross the
district, access to board members who are volunteers and without a
staff, motivating students in the areas of math and science when there
is an uneven distrubution of certified teachers among the schools, and
the importance of the fine arts for children with little interest in
the sciences.

You can get glimpses of each of the candidates position on these
matters along with their background and experience by going to their
websites: Vincent Torres, Ed Leo, Annette LoVoi, Karen Dulaney Smith,
and Alberto Gonzales. Election day is May 13th. Here is a link to a recent Austin Chronicle profile of the candidates.

Again, thanks to the
candidates for meeting with us, to the Gullett PTA for co-hosting the
event, and to John Keohane for initiating the forum.