In the November 8 election, parent and school volunteer Priscilla Lofton is challenging incumbents for a seat on the Sulphur Springs School District Board, where there hasn’t been an election in eight years.
In a candidate’s forum on KHTS, hosted by Joe Messina, Lofton said that while she is a champion of the students, she does like some things the current board has done:
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“I like the fact that they, at least the school board does, try to attend most of the school functions and try to be part of the school and that they have held a relatively good reserve for last few years," she said.
Incumbents Shelley Weinstein and Denis DeFiguerido said that the changes they would like to see involve student assessment: According to Weinstein,
“I would like to see the district improve student achievement and I would like to see our test scores go up higher," she said.
DeFiguerido said that a realignment of federal and state oversight is in order.
“I think assessment – assessment that is driven by No Child Left Behind has put us at a disadvantage.”
Candidates for the Saugus School District also spent some time in studio with Messina, including educator Stephen Samuel Winkler, who is challenging incumbents Rose Diaz and Rose Koscielny. Their most spirited conversation was over charter schools. Winkler started the discussion.
“We should make every possible effort in the Saugus Union School District to reach the bar that charter schools set and say we can be better than charter schools, we can give more quality education with the better teachers and we can be better than all the schools in the whole wide world," Winkler said, emphatically.
Koscielny said she was on the other side of the issue
“I disagree with Mr. Winkler 100 percent. If you look at charter schools you will find out there are just as many charter schools that are failing miserably," she said.
Diaz said that some things charter schools promise are already in place in Saugus.
“We don’t have a lot of the issues LA Unified might have, thank goodness. I think we do have a good education for kids, if we didn’t, charter schools have their place," Diaz explained.