Kim Williams is seeking a seat on the Frederick County Board of Education. The primary is June 26.
What is your vision for Frederick County Public Schools over the next four years?
My vision for FCPS is that put the education of all students first, no matter who they are, how much their parents make or where they live. A quality education should be the only option for all students. Electing the right people to collectively make smart decisions on behalf of our students, is a must.
Do you think Frederick County Public Schools have effectively used resources to keep schools safe? What do you think needs to happen to make schools more safe?
Keeping our schools safe is a hugh issue and thinking there is magic dusk fix, us not realistic. For starters, having an SRO in every school, is a must. There is also budget issues for the Sheriff's Department, that would provide the officers. Next is proper training on what each and every person should do, in case of emergency at school. Next there needs to be more counselors available to students to address mental concerns. School shootings are and continues to be a huge issues, and 1 such event, has been way too much.
Do you think FCPS is effective in curbing bullying in schools, and reacts to instances of bullying in an effective manner? Why or why not?
I believe there needs to be very definite rules in bullying and what will happen to those that commits that action. Teachers and staff should be trained to recognize bullying instances and get thwm resolved. I do not know of specific instances of bullying in school, so I can't speak to that.
FCPS still has some inequities with certain student groups being suspended at disproportionate rates. Do you see this as an issue, and what could be done to keep student groups from being suspended more often than others? Why or why not?Yes, I do see that there is an issue with disproportionate discipline actions of minority students in reference to the percentage that they make up in the school. Depending on what the offense is, there needs to be better understanding on part of the teachers/staff of what is going on between the parties, and not just suspend the students. These kids are living and going to school in a much different world than before.
Frederick’s land terrain has presented challenges and increased costs in school construction, what could the Board of Education do to ensure that sites identified as future schools would be less costly to build on?
I think that there needs to be a collaboration between public and private sector to help fund future school projects.
Do you feel like FCPS is adequately prepared to address overcrowding and provide a seat to every student in the county? If not, what needs to be done to ensure that it is?
At this point, I do not think we are prepared to provide a seat to every student in the school building. As long as there are portables, there is over crowding at schools. Every thing has a cost, so building a new school with adequate space takes some foresight and proper planning long, long before a new school building is even started. It is way more complicated to get a new school building to fruition, to make it all happen under budget.
Is a countywide redistricting needed to combat the overcrowding in schools in specific parts of the county. Why or why not?
While there are smaller schools that are under utilized in Frederick County, I don't think that a redistricting is needed at the time. I know long ago when my neighborhood was redistricted it was done so not necessarily to just relieve overcrowding in the school, but for other reasons as well.
Is the PARCC, or any other standardized test, an effective measure of achievement or growth in schools? Why or why not?
While I think some testing is necessary, but over testing is not good. I think that is where we are at now. The teachers are tailoring their lessons for the testing only and it leaves very little time for actual instruction.for our students. Not everyone will test well or plan to go into college. How are those kids test scores captured. They may want to go onto a vo tech schools or may want to delay going to college.
The current BOE committed to increasing teacher salaries through a four-year scale, and has received funding support from the county. Are you committed to continuing to implement that scale, and is Frederick County currently paying its teachers what it should be in relation to the rest of the state?
I am most definitely in favor of the teachers/staff receiving additional pay in a pay scale increase, over the next 4 years. We have been nweding that fie a very long time. We want quality teachers working and Iiving in Frederick County, and not leaving here to go.work in other school systems for more money.
What, if anything, should FCPS and the BOE do to address the teacher shortage, in particular among minority teachers?
We need to recruit at HCBU Colleges and Universities in this area to diversify. The way we do that is to recruit in neighboring States that have a high concentration minority teachers. Frederick is still considered a small country town, and the more we have in our favor, familiarity, good housing prices, good schools, a safe place to raise a family,to offer a teacher, they will come here to work.
Do you think FCPS has adequately provided funding for its charter schools, and holding them accountable to the charters they signed?
I know that the State requires public school to fund charter schools, and they maybe be financial shortfalls in reference to their funding. I think they should be held accountable for the charter that is signed.
Parents over the last year have raised concerns over the IEP process and the services students with disabilities have received. Does FCPS need to improve its special education practices or programs? If so, how?
I believe that if there are legitimate documented concerns over the way the programs are being run, and maybe the policies need to be reviewed by Dr. Alban and the Board of Education members. Providing our children with the best possible education, no matter what their disability, is important. They are our children and making sure that reach their potential is important as well.