This is a draft.
As a professional educator, it has come to my attention through practice and study that our education system is in a bad state. Before you get irate, this isn't about teachers. This isn't about schools. This isn't about administrators. And, yet, it is. This is about testing.
Testing has become the end all of education. According to a student by the American Federation of Teachers (2013), student can spend from 20-50 hours testing per year in some grades. In addition, another 60-110 hours are spent on test preparation. And that is not the worst of it.
Because districts, schools, administrators, and teachers a judged on the test scores, these assessments become the sole focus of the education system. Critical and creative thought are smothered by bubble sheets and short answered responses.
As a school board member, I would work to make tests less important. Let our schools be celebrated for creating stimulating learning environments, implementing innovative ideas, and promoting critical thinking and creative endeavors. Let the schools of Columbia County be know for helping students become successful in life and not just successful on tests.
With the exception of a year, I have been a teacher or a student for my entire life. I have taught on many different levels. I have been a middle school teacher (okay, for one semester for student teaching...because of this, I have a profound respect for middle school teachers), high school, undergraduates and graduate students. I have coached soccer in youth leagues and high school. Education is in my blood.