Live Blog: Douglas County Board of Education Forum

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post will be updated in real time. Check back frequently during the forum for updates.

8:41 p.m.: The forum is finished. Thank you to all the candidates for participating and thank you to the audience – especially the editors from other high schools – for supporting us. Did you miss the forum? Want to see it again? Check out the livestream posted on VistaNow.

8:36 p.m.: David Ray says, “I had to watch a 7th grade student address the school board with a 60-second speech. She had to rush through to beat the clock. That’s not freedom, ladies and gentlemen, that’s control.”

8:30 p.m.: Closing statements begin.

8:28 p.m.: Tensions rise as Richard Robbins fights to get his point across to an angry crowd while discussing school spending. The crowd boos and subtle jabs are exchanged between candidates.

8:22 p.m.: Seventh question, from Twitter: “How can we make change if we only have a shoe string budget?”

8:20 p.m.: Richard Robbins says, “We empower the schools and the School Accountability Committees at the local level. We don’t make those decisions at the district board level. SACs do not have good representation; that is why these decisions are being made.”

8:17 p.m.: David Ray says, “Instead of rolling something out that is not feasible, we should start with the teachers and ask them what they need. We roll out initiatives without thinking.”

8:13 p.m.: Sixth question: “How can schools teach global awareness if they don’t have the funding for it?”

8:12 p.m.: Craig Richardson says, “Change is difficult, but we have to try. The process in doing it is noble.”

8:10 p.m.: Anne-Marie Lemieux says, “Just vote for Wendy Vogel, David Ray and I. We need an anonymous survey that gives [the teachers] a voice.”

8:06 p.m.: Fifth question: “For those who are currently on the board: Mountain Vista Media conducted a survey last year that said the vast majority of teachers are not pleased with the schools. Do you think the survey would be different this year?”

8:02 p.m.: Kevin Larsen says, “That is the market rate for superintendents everywhere. You pay because there are fewer of them able to do this job.”

7:58 p.m.: Fourth question: “How do you defend Superintendent Fagan’s salary being nearly 5x that of the average teacher?”

7:46 p.m.: Wendy Vogel says, “It’s a tool in the belt of corporate education to impose control over schools.”

7:42 p.m.: Third question: “Why are teachers evaluated mostly on standardized tests?”

7:37 p.m.: Craig Richardson says, “Big companies, like Nike and Yahoo, agree they want to see these Four C’s in the workforce. We need to continue to teach them and put importance on them.”

7:36 p.m.: David Ray answers, “These are great strategies for us to learn and model. The one C we definitely need to teach adults and board members is collaboration.”

7:34 p.m.: Second question: How do you plan on implementing the Four C’s in classrooms if you are elected to the school board?

7:31 p.m.: Richard Robbins: “Since I moved here in 2003 I have been on the District Accountability Committee.”

7:28 p.m.: Anne-Marie Lemieux: “I helped fund the Douglas County Parents with Wendy Vogel. I want to be on the school board to ask the questions that need to be asked.”

7:26 p.m.: The questioning period is now open. First question: “What are your experiences in education and why are you running for board of education?”

7:23 p.m.: Wendy Vogel is the final candidate to give her opening statement. “I have volunteered in my kids’ schools for a long time. I am here tonight because I care about kids. I want to see us have thriving schools that focus on our kids.”

7:13 p.m.: David Ray gives his opening statement. “Truly, the highlight of my life has been being a principle in Douglas County for 23 years. I’ve invested a lot of time in this district, I don’t want to see it torn down.”

7:06 p.m.: Incumbent Kevin Larsen begins the forum with his opening statement. “When my kids are involved, I want to be involved as well. I have four years of experience walking the walk. I look forward to continuing to work in education.”

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