- Enact appropriate and sustainable funding solutions to support the basics of a statewide quality public education system.
- To take back the legislature for the citizens of Arizona and ensure that their voices are heard above those of special interests, outsider donors, and lobbyists.
The Arizona legislature for decades has been consistently cutting taxes at the detriment of properly supporting public education. This is why we are here today with a shortage of qualified educators, crumbling schools, resource deprived, and a public demanding action. Remember when we citizens had to take the legislature and Govenor Ducey to court to force them to follow the law and fund our schools and still they refused. A compromise was reached, however, the legislature still failed to enact legislation for sustainable public school funding. That is why I will support the following actions when elected:
- Decreasing and/or eliminating targeted corporate tax cuts.
- Supporting The Invest in Education Act initiative.
- Call for a review and elimination of tax loopholes.
Take politics out of education
We are one of thirteen states that elect a Superintendent of Education. We have elected non-educators to this position. Considering our present situation and experiences with non-educators in this position we need to make a change. We need experienced leaders in education to take over the reins of state K-12 education. These prospective superintendents should be hired by a board of Arizona educators.
Elimination of the state AzMerit Tests
It is time consuming and disruptive to the efforts of teachers to keep students engaged in the flow of their studies during the testing periods. It is costly. Estimated that we spend $19 million a year to administer the test. Superintendent Douglas is requesting $4 million more for FY2019. What have we done with the results? Nothing substantial that merits continuing the testing.
Overhaul the school grading system
A school’s grade is too heavily dependent on the AzMERIT exams. The ability or desire for a student to take a test is not truly a direct result of the school’s actions. Unless that school does nothing but train students to take tests. The school should not be graded on the ability of the student body to do well on exams. Schools should be graded on what they can control and should provide for a student to grow and learn. Such criteria as the number of qualified teachers on staff. Ratio of qualified resource staff to support the student body. Clubs and activities offered by the school. There are many other fair and proper criteria to grade a school. Testing is not one of these criteria.
Incorporate statewide policies known to succeed in education
Lower student classroom size statewide. No teacher should have more than 25 students in the classroom. More resource staff such as councilors, psychologists, teacher aids. Funding for after school student programs. Pay our teachers a salary competitive to other states so that we may be able to hire and retain qualified teachers for classroom continuity in our schools.
Legislature committed to Arizona citizens
It is my opinion that there is a “we versus them” relationship between the legislature and the majority of Arizonians. Many issues especially education exemplify this relationship. The majority of voters want a quality public education system for our children. This requires more funding. The legislature has constantly put up road blocks through legislation and outright defiance against the will of the people to fund education. These road blocks were initiated because they knew they would lose if the vote went to the public. We live in a democracy. When those who represent us fail to institute laws that the majority of its citizens demand then it is time to make changes and elect people who will find solutions and institute laws for the prosperity of all Arizonians.
A definite, but no wall. Mexico is not going to pay for the wall. The funds for building the wall can be more wisely spent creating American investment in the Central American countries where violence and poverty has caused this refuge crisis we have on our southern border. Security at the border requires more sophisticated technology with border patrols being able to respond quicker with increased agility. As General Patton once said, “Fixed fortifications are monuments to man's stupidity.” We are smarter than that.
Until the U.S. Congress votes and establishes a comprehensive immigration law, it is my opinion that DACA residents should be given all privileges as legal residents. They have grown up in our American culture. Indoctrinated to our norms. They have contributed to our society and economy as much as any of our citizens. I am confident that Congress will do the right thing and give them a path towards citizenship.
I will support and defend the second amendment to my fullest. I also believe in a democracy where ideas are brought forward, discussed, and voted upon by the citizenry. In a democracy where the majority of citizens desire certain actions and our representatives do not respond in kind then our democracy is broken. One such issue is the concern of gun control. A minority holds the majority hostage through threats and dark money aimed at our representatives. I advocate for sensible gun control. I do not support “a gun for all solutions” mentality. “The only way to stop a bad man with a gun is a good man with a gun.” feeds fear and does nothing to solve our problems. If legislation is brought forward I would vote to ban bump stocks and any device capable to turn any semi-automatic weapon into an automatic weapon such as those used in the Las Vegas massacre. We need to institute universal background checks. Close the gun show loopholes. A ban on large capacity magazines. Ban any assault rifle that fires a caliber greater than a .22 round.
No person, group, or government has the ethical right to tell a woman what she can or cannot do with her body. I will not support any law that places undo obstacles or burdens upon a woman that has to make life changing decisions for herself. She should be free of political pressures from outside groups. She should be free to consult with her medical and support people who she trusts to make the decision that is right for her wellbeing.