Who has questions for Mr.G for district 3?

The National Organization for Women did and these were they answers. Then if you ever have any questions just let me know.

1. A comprehensive sex education curriculum for all K-12
students. Support, yes
Research shows us that students with a comprehensive sex
education curriculum have fewer unwanted pregnancies and better health
outcomes. I get it is a sensitive subject for some parents, but we need to
educate them as well about why it is so important.
2. Programs to support and protect gay, lesbian, transgender
and bisexual students. Support, yes
I have to say I am outraged that Matt Schellenberg candidate
district 7 has hired a campaign manager who has said among other grotesque
things that gay people are suffering from a mental illness. It’s outrageous and
disgusting.  I would do all I could to
make sure our most vulnerable children were not just protected but valued as
well.
3. Teachers carrying guns on school grounds. Oppose, yes
Teachers are not the police. Teachers already have so much
going on and guns are a reactive and dangerous solution. We need to be
proactive and invest in social workers and mental health counselors because
quite often why a student acts up or does poorly in school has nothing to do
with school. I would also want to expand anti-bullying programs. Kids can be cruel,
but I am not always sure they mean to be. 
 
4. Taxpayer funded scholarships to private schools. Oppose,
yes
I want to point out that
voucher schools can pick who they take and keep, many exclude disabled and
LGBTQ children, can teach whatever they want, including junk science and
history, their teachers don’t have to have degrees or certifications and they
have so little accountability you might as well say they have none. If a
private school offers a program that the public school doesn’t then getting a
voucher for that school is a conversation, we can have but other than that
public money and resources should only go to public schools.
5. The expansion of taxpayer funded charter schools. Oppose
yes.
I hope people understand that for the most part charter
schools are not here to educate children, instead they are here to make money
for their owners. The original concept for them was a parent teacher driven
laboratory where innovation could be explored that worked in tandem with
districts. That is not what we have by a long shot. If a charter was nonprofit
and innovative and worked with the district having them is a conversation we
should have, but unfortunately that is not what we have. I support not just a
moratorium on new charters but a roll back on charters that we have. Then going
forward only opening charters that are nonprofit, innovative and can show a
need.
6. A sales surtax to fund education. Support, yes
DCPS schools are some of the oldest and disrepaired (for a
variety of reasons) in the state and we desperately need the surtax.  That being said we shouldn’t fool ourselves,
a recent change to the law that requires districts to share sur tax money with
charters based on a proportional basis is going to cost the district hundreds
of millions of dollars.  The referendum
must be supported, are needs are beyond great, but we also need to support pro
education candidates that can rectify what happened and bring more money back
to our schools.
7. Prayer in school and/or teaching the beliefs of one
religion. Oppose, yes
Religious studies are fine and even valuable, but to put one
religion above all others is antithetical to the values of our nation.
As for prayer, sure if a teacher or kid wants to pray that
is fine with me, but it cannot be structured and must be private.
8. The use of Florida state and/or standardized testing to
determine student promotion or school grades. Oppose, yes
Boiling education down to a test discounts everything else
that has gone on. Furthermore, tests are supposed to help instruction not drive
it and Florida uses its tests to punish kids, teachers, and schools. Florida’s
tests as they do them are expensive, mean, and unnecessary.
9. Programs to assist pregnant teens and/or teenage parents.
Support, yes
I think for many of our children we need more social workers
mental health counselors and wrap around services.
10. Teaching the history of Civil Rights and Race Relations
in Jacksonville and North Florida. Support, yes
I would also support implicit bias training education for
our students and staff. We have an open wound that society and Jacksonville
have attempted to gloss over, pretend does not exist. It infuriates when people
say changing the names of schools named after confederate era figure is erasing
history, when so much history with civil rights, has been neglected and ignored
except for that three-day unit during black history month. We teach western civ
and European history and ignore what is happening in our backyards and
neighborhoods.    
11. The enforcement of the federal civil rights law Title IX
in all K-12 school settings. Support, yes
Absolutely, gender equality is long overdue, and
discrimination should not be tolerated.
12. A K-12 curriculum that emphasizes understanding cultural
diversity. Support, yes
We should embrace and learn from our differences. The United
States was founded with the idea it could be a melting pot and it is time we
stopped playing lip service to that notion and embraced it. Our differences
make us stronger and should not be feared, marginalized, or reviled.  
13. Changing the names of schools named after a Confederate
leader. Support, yes
Long overdue, and where I think we need to be creative with
paying for it, we are beyond broke, it should be done with all due haste. I was
proud to speak about this at the last school board meeting.
14. Gender equity in pay and opportunities for all school
jobs, including before/after supplemental and/or coaching positions. Support,
yes
Is this not happening now in DCPS? If so ugh. That would be
something I would seek to stop on day one. That being said, all our DCPS
coaches are under stipend ed for what they do and I would seek to increase them
all across the board.
15. The use of Student Resource Officers(SRO) on school
campuses. Oppose, yes
I do not believe guns (at all) or the police should be
regular figures on our campuses. If we do have officers on campus, they should
be real officers not lightly trained safety assistants.
Please explain how you would: 1. Increase direct
services/resources to students with disabilities.
I work at a center school and we code all the students as
254s or 255s top of the funding tree. A student with the same disability at a
comprehensive school might be coded as a 251 or a 252 barely above the standard
funding. How does that make any sense? It does not and we need to educate all
our schools in how to properly advocate for funding.
2. Provide additional resources to under performing schools.
I am reminded of that meme with three kids of three
different sizes each with a block standing by a fence. One towers over it, one
barely makes it and one can’t see anything. Instead of punishing schools in
poverty with high stakes tests we need to advocate for more funding and in
Florida that means electing pro education candidates. Sadly, we are fooling
ourselves if we think there is another way.
3. Increase student safety on school campuses.
Most of what we do is reactive. We need more guidance
counselors, mental health counselors and social worked in our schools because
quite often why a student acts up or does poorly has nothing to do with
school.  Then wrap around service and
helping families with social services can go a long way to making schools safer.
4. Support individual schools in your district.
If elected I plan to regularly do bus duty and meet with
staff at all the schools to find out what their individual needs are. Then I
plan to fight against new charter schools unless they demonstrate a need which
will stop them from draining public schools of their precious resources. I plan
to vigorously support the referendum and pro education candidates as well.
5. Attract and retain a diverse, highly qualified
instructional and administrative staff.
We cannot just hope we can attract we also have to recruit
so there is that. Here is the thing if we support our staff with resources and
take into consideration their needs, if we don’t marginalize, overwork,
discount and ignore our staff we will both attract and retain great teachers
and staff.

Note I just wanted to say, above are not just answers on a
questionnaire. I have for over a decade talked the talk and walked the walk
when advocating for public ed, children of color and teachers through my blog www.jaxkidsmatter.blogspot.com
,various other publications and other forms of advocacy. I hope you will check them
out as well. 

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