Aside from the budget, what are your two top priorities for the Ypsilanti schools?
My two top priorities are:
A. To focus on implementing the new initiative designed from the Consolidation, during the Summer of 2012. This priority can be accomplished by supporting teachers creative approaches to teaching and learning.
B. To ensure safe teaching and learning environments and restore public confidence in the school system. This can be accomplished by encouraging a strong and vibrant community schools. Promoting the positive things that are happening in the school and cultivating safe and inviting schools.
What ideas do you have for reducing students' out-of-school days (unexcused absences)?
First, we need to survey students to find out why they are absent from school. Once that information is gathered, there will be a better idea of what needs to be done. However, I think if we had a more active approach to learning, students would be more engaged in their learning, thus it would lead to less absences.
Staff morale has been an issue in the school district. How do you think the board should monitor and respond to staff morale issues, if at all? What ideas do you have for reducing staff turnover in the coming year?
To monitor staff morale issues, I think a survey should be given to the staff after each semester in a school year. After this information is gathered, have a discussion with Administration to see what ideas or support is needed to boost morale.
One idea to reduce staff turnover is being more supportive of the staff and ensuring a safe teaching and learning environment.
Are you satisfied with the district’s openness and transparency to parents, employees, and community members/taxpayers? If yes, why? If no, what changes would you propose?
I'm not satisfied with the district's openness and transparency. I would propose that the district have town hall meetings in the community more often. Also, the district should set aside time in the school year to get feedback from parents, employees and students on how things are going and issues they are experiencing in the district.
Hindsight is perfect, but: whether you are an incumbent, or not: Name one decision that the YCS school board made in the last six months that you think was a very good decision; and name one decision that the school board made in the last six months that you wish had been decided differently.
A very good decision that the board made in the last six months was the support of the Ypsilanti Promise Program.
A decision that the board made in the last six months that I wish had been decided differently is the Truancy Ordinance.
Former board members from Willow Run, Ypsilanti Schools, or Ypsilanti Community Schools: When were you a former board member? Were you appointed or elected? What did you learn from your experience on the WR, YS, or YCS board that you think would be helpful on the board now?
I was a former board member from 2006 - 2010 and again in 2012 [Ed. Note: For Ypsilanti Public Schools]. I was elected each term. What I have learned from my experience on the school board is that you must communicate often with the community and all board members. Always be prepared at the board meetings (review board packet, beforehand), so that you have intelligent input in discussions.
Assuming that you are elected, name one or two other board candidates that you would like to see serve beside you, and explain why.
One board candidate that I would like to see serve beside me is Djeneba Cherif. I think that Djeneba can bring a fresh prospective to the board. She is a young woman who attended Ypsilanti schools in the last seven to eight years and has been success in her endeavors.
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