Kim L. Hodne
Candidate for Ketchikan School Board
Public office, to serve the public. Those fortunate to be given the opportunity to serve assume a responsibility of trust, the public's trust. The community we represent deserves integrity, honesty and complete transparency in their elected officials, always. I believe the public business should be conducted in the light of day, not in closed session. The district has lost a degree of public trust in these past few months with the poorly managed challenge COVID has placed on all of us. Leadership and the school board majority were tone deaf to the publics concerns, questions and timely communications. I will work tirelessly to help restore that trust through open communications, accountability and transparency.
School has opened and students, parents and educators are making the best of a difficult situation, everyone is doing their part to make school happen. We all recognize that it is only temporary, in time, life will return to a more normal routine. A routine where teachers and students interact without social distance, lunch and recess are a time for relaxing together, lockers are used and hallways are alive with kids and the noise that goes with it.
One issue I will pursue from day one is open communication with all stakeholders and the re-establishment of the long-standing Borough/School District liaison committee. I’m not sure when or why this vital line of cooperation was abandoned in the last two years but I believe it needs to be brought back. An example of it’s importance is the Houghtaling bus safety project which may have not happened as quickly as it did without that committees hard work.
A second issue that needs attention is class offerings. There seems to be much growth in administrative positions while classes fall off. Again, an important element for education was dropped with zero public input, the one credit CTE requirement for graduation. What happened to Maritime class, welding, woodshop and other career option classes? This requirement was set by the board in 2018 and now is gone. This is an area that should grow not disappear. District money needs to be spent on bettering education for the kids not adding to the admin ranks.
I am a strong believer in process, fair, open and consistent. The most glaring failure in that was the hiring of the current superintendent. There was no open conversation or public access to the process or decision, a first for our community. This position is critical to the future of our public education in vision, development and stable leadership that has the full confidence of the community. I believe we need to exhaust all local resources first, persons who understand our culture, heritage and needs. Simple.
If you agree that our public education must be a shared community vision that is “Kids First” centered then we have the perfect starting point, I modestly ask for your support and vote for a one year seat on the KGBSD Board of Education. Together we will guide our kids education to the next level, one we can be proud of.
Kim L. Hodne
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