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PUSD Candidate Q and A: Adrienne Konigar-Macklin

Pomona Unified school board candidates answer questions from Patch.

Photo courtesy of Adrienne Konigar-Macklin
Photo courtesy of Adrienne Konigar-Macklin

Pomona Unified School District Candidate Q and A

Name: Adrienne Konigar-Macklin

Age: 53

Website: www.akmacklin4kids.org

Campaign Commercial: http://youtu.be/BSI8O-ejmqc

Occupation: Education Attorney/Governing Board Member, PUSD

1.     Please introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about your background and why you should be elected or reelected to the Pomona Unified School District Board of Education.

I am excited about the many wonderful things going on in our Pomona and Diamond Bar schools! I am honored to be your school board representative and to be a part of the continuing transformation of our District. I encourage voters to vote by mail early/and or at the polls on Tuesday, November 5, 2013.  My website www.akmacklin4kids.org is not only designed to provide valuable information about our schools but to also use technology to communicate with parents, students and community members in Pomona and Diamond Bar.

Our children deserve excellence in education, to be prepared to enter the college or career of their choice and succeed. We owe them fiscal accountability and strong community involvement. With dedication, support and hard work, we will continue to strive to secure funding for schools in California and make education a priority.  

Associated Pomona Teachers, Inc, California School Employees Association Pomona Chapter 14, the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, Pomona Mayor Elliot Rothman, Diamond Bar City Council Members Ling Chang, Council Member Steve Tye, Pomona City Council Member Debra Martin and Paula Lantz, alongside Carlos Goytia, Three Valleys Municipal Water District Division 1 Director have endorsed my re-election.

2.     What do you see as the primary role of the school board?

To implement policies that improve educational offerings for children and maintain fiscal control.

3.     One key thing school board members are tasked with is voting on budgets and making sure the district is spending wisely. What kind of experience do you have working with budgets?

I have over 27 years of experience serving as an educational lawyer representing school districts. I have extensive experience in school district finance and with managing school and legal departmental budgets. My tenure on the Board of Education has also afforded me the opportunity to understand and analyze the District's specific budetary items, expenditures, funding and constraints.

4.     If elected or re-elected to the board, what will be your top 3 priorities for the upcoming term?

Continue to offer challenging and innovative instructional programs

Continue to promote fiscal transparency and conservative management

Continue to seek and partner with private industry for development of instructional programs and funding.

5.     Gov. Jerry Brown recently signed the Local Control Funding Formula legislation into law, which will give districts supplemental funding based on the number of students who are English learners, students from low-income families and foster youth and a concentration grant for districts with over 55 percent of this targeted population. What do you think of this new formula?  How do you think it will benefit Pomona Unified?

Pomona school district has a varied and diverse student population. Students who meet the criteria will greatly benefit from the funding formula and the District will ultimately be in a better position to expand current programs that address these issues and develop additional educational programs and provide services that will help students excel.

6.     Do you have any specific changes you want to make in school district policies, programs, or the various school curricula being offered? If so, what changes do you want to make and why?

I continue to review the District’s policies and practices to ensure that they are relevant, current and provide direction to administrators, teachers, staff, parents and students.  I  have a vested interest in expanding our curriculum to include more vocational and career courses that are in high demand in the medical and trade professions, to name a few. 

7.     School districts, including PUSD, are rolling out new standards known as common core.  What are your thoughts on common core? What are some key issues, if any, you see with implementing it?
 
Common Core is a new way of educating children. As with any program, I believe there should be flexibility and an implementation pilot period. School districts should have some discretion to continue to use programs that have proven successful and to modify common core to “fit”  student(s).   Ultimately, our students need to be able to compete on a global level and we need to focus on effective programs, regardless of their origin.

8.     What are your thoughts on how the district’s test scores are trending year to year? How important of a measure do you feel test scores are in determining student achievement? How important do you think they are in evaluating teacher performance?

Test scores are one valuable measure of performance. However, there are so many other factors which come into play that I don’t believe they can be used as a complete measurement of a student’s progress or a teacher’s performance.

9.     What do you see as the primary role of the superintendent? What do you think the board’s role is in working with the superintendent?

The Superintendent is the chief instructional leader and executive officer.  His primary role is the ensure that the educational needs of all students are being met.  He is also responsible for managing the day to day operations of the District and staff.

10.  What are your thoughts on the importance of parental involvement in helping students achieve. How will you engage the community to improve public schools in the district?

Parental involvement is one of the most important factors in successfully educating students. I have made tremendous effort to ensure that parents are involved and are encouraged to participate at their child’s school. I will continue to meet and dialogue with parents, and initiate parent participation activities, programs and educational services. Parents should be provided with all the tools necessary to support the educational program and their children.

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