Do you have kids in PISD schools? Read our guide to your PISD board candidates!

Do you know much about the PISD Board?

This coming May 4th is also the Election Day for our PISD (Plano Independent School District) Board of Trustees (for open seats in Places 4,5,6 and 7). The Board has the power to vote over many key decisions – they elect the Board President and on many decisions that affect all of our Students and Staff across PISD.

We are hosting a “Meet the Candidates” Forum for Plano Moms on April 16th:

11.30 – 1pm

Haggard Library, 2501 Coit Rd, Plano, TX 75075

Plano Independent School District serves the residents of approximately 100 square miles in southwest Collin County. This area includes 66 square miles in the City of Plano and parts of the following cities: Plano, Richardson, Dallas, Allen, Carrollton, Garland, Lucas, Murphy, Parker and Wylie.

It includes 53,057 students, 3,968 teachers and 72 campuses.

Their ongoing District goals are:

(1) Ensure continued improvement in student learning.
(2) Ensure efficient use of financial resources/budgeting.

As so many of us are parents of current PISD and future students, we must keep ourselves informed on our candidates and the issues that they are campaigning on:

For this Election Cycle, the hot topics that are being discussed among Parents and PISD and their Board of Trustees are:

  • Robin Hood/Recapture Financing
  • School finance reform (HB3) – the Texas House recently laid out this Bill, which will deliver more funding back to our Schools.
  • Dyslexia programs and funding
  • Teacher merit-based pay
  • Creating middle school IB Program for transition from Huffman to Academy High
  • High stakes testing
  • Full-day Pre-K

Plano Independent School District

 

Your Candidates are:

Place 4

Heather Wang
Katherine Chan Goodwin
Lisa Kolodny

Place 5

Semida Voicu
David Stolle

Place 6 (unexpired term)

Greyson M. Dunn
Jeri Chambers

Place 7

Dylan Rafaty
Khalid Ishaq
Cody Weaver

Q & A – Get to know your Candidates who are seeking your vote

Place 4

Heather Wang

What motivates you to want to become a board member?  I am the first in my family to attend college and a first generation immigrant. I earned my Ph.D. degree from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. I believe a great education is the best gift we can give to our children and the best investment in our future. My husband Jack and I moved to Plano 13 years ago because of the great schools in our district. My two daughters, Jessica and Carolyn, have benefited greatly from the quality education in PISD. They both are currently enrolled in Jasper High School. I am very much in love with the Plano ISD community and feel a personal responsibility to make sure that our schools continue to be top notch.

I have been a very involved parent and a committed volunteer in the Plano ISD community. Education is something very near and dear to my heart. Since my teenagers are becoming more and more independent, I started to look for better ways to serve our community and help more children. Serving on the school board will enable me to do just that: I will be able to help each and every one of the 53,123 children in Plano ISD reach their full potential!

Last but not least, my husband and I believe in leading by example. Running for school board is my way to teach our children that there is great value in being a public servant.

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member?  I have a combined 20 years of experience with our school system. While raising my two daughters in PSD, I have volunteered in different positions as a PTA member in all of my kids’ schools. I enjoyed being a cafeteria mom, library mom, copy room mom! I currently serve as the Vice President of Ways and Means for Jasper High School PTSA. I also serve as a member of the School Partner Team at Chase Oaks Church, helping out at Title 1 elementary schools.

I have been serving as a member of the PISD Diversity Advisory Committee and the Gifted and Talented Advisory Committee. I have also attended PISD board meetings and work sessions during the past two years and worked with our current board and the district leadership on a variety of issues. My active engagement with PISD as a PTA parent, as a volunteer, and as an education advocate will enable me to be an effective representative of our community on the school board.

I am the broker-owner of a real estate company. As a successful business owner, I am an expert in budgeting, planning, and negotiating for my business and my clients. I believe in the need to exercise prudence in all financial decisions and will try my best to be a good steward of the taxpayers’ money.

How long have you lived in this school district? I have lived in this school district for 13 years!

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district? The Robin Hood Tax, the money robbed from PISD by the state, is an obvious challenge. In 2018-2019, PISD’s recapture tax is $211M. The projected 2019-2020 recapture tax will be $241M if property values don’t go up; $261M if property values go up 9%. In the current 86th legislative session, we hope to have a sensible solution for school finance reform to give taxpayers real property tax relief, and at the same time adequately fund our schools. That is why I showed up in Austin on Feb.25 for PTA Rally Day and met with our state legislators to advocate for school finance reform.

Let’s also remember that in the 1.44 tax rate ($1.44 per $100 value) consists of 3 parts: Maintenance and Operations (M&O), Interest and Sinking (I&S), and Recapture (Robin Hood Tax). M&O takes 78 cents; Recapture takes 39 cents; and I&S makes up 27 cents. The math is simple: 78 cents+39 cents+27 cents=$1.44. While we agonize over the 39 cents robbed by the state, we shouldn’t forget that we still hold the purse strings to the other 78 cents for M&O, plus the 27 cents for I&S (debt service). PISD has about $900M debt (average $18,000 per student) and is paying about $50M per year for interest alone. PISD issued policy CCA (Local) on 1/28/2019 as the district’s long term debt management guidelines. The school board needs to exercise oversight and make sure these guidelines are implemented. I believe in exercising financial prudence. It is our duty and responsibility to make sound financial decisions for the sake of a better future for our Plano ISD community.

Once elected, I will try my best to promote transparency and accountability, and be a good steward of the taxpayers’ money.
In the 2018 accountability listing, 26 out of our 73 campuses were identified for additional targeted support under federal accountability. Economically disadvantaged students in Plano ISD has risen to 27.1 % of all students. Many residents are not aware of these facts. In the face of these challenges, once elected, I will work hard to help all students achieve their full potential. I believe we need to hire and retain quality teachers with competitive pay, and great professional development. I believe that setting goals for achievement and providing efficient and consistent instruction will result in reliably high performing schools. I believe in the power of collaboration among all parties of the PISD learning community.

Finally, I believe that students will thrive only in a safe, healthy, and supportive learning environment. I will make it my priority to ensure that the district’s anti-bullying policies are followed. Children need to learn to disagree with respect and kindness. In addition to campus security, I would also advocate for cyber safety, good cyber citizenship, and data safety for all students, faculty and staff.

Katherine Chan Goodwin

What motivates you to want to become a board member? I believe in growing every child to their fullest potential.  Every child comes with their gifts, and growth opportunities. It is our responsibility to meet them where they are, and provide the resources for them to reach their brightest future.  A whole child, with all their needs met makes a better student, ready to succeed.

Plano ISD fulfilled its commitment to my children.  It’s my turn to ensure the best future for the children who follow them, completing the circle required for a thriving community

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member? My husband, Thomas and I bought our first home in Plano as newlyweds 30 years ago.  Our children, Chloe and Ben attended Plano schools from first grade through their graduations from Plano Senior High School.

I served on the Executive Board of every Plano ISD school’s PTA/PTSA/PTO that my children attended; volunteering, and holding various positions, multiple times, including President, Treasurer, VP Membership, VP Ways and Means, VP Volunteers, and on Audit and Nominating committees.  I am the proud recipient of the Texas PTA Lifetime Membership Award.

Additionally, I served as Treasurer multiple years for the Young Men’s Service League, Wildcat Chapter, Plano Senior High School Wildcat Battalion JROTC Booster Club, and Plano Future Farmers of America Buyers Club.  I am currently a member of the City of Plano Senior Advisory Board, and also certified as a Long-Term Care Ombudsman for Texas residents of assisted living, and nursing facilities.

My education includes a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of California, and a Master’s degree in Dispute Resolution from Southern Methodist University.  Following my career at EDS Corporation, I founded and served as CEO of my own commercial real estate company.

I possess a mixture of experiences and skills making me uniquely qualified to tackle the complex, weighty, and sometimes emotionally charged concerns of Plano ISD with intellect, diplomacy and compassion.

How long have you lived in this school district? Our family has grown and thrived in Plano for 30 years.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district?
The debates over property taxes, and school finance during the state legislative session in Austin clearly show the financial challenges we face.  It also emphasizes the necessity of School Board Trustees in conjunction with City Council members, and the Plano Chamber of Commerce acting as powerful advocates for our students.  I will work with my fellow Trustees to find ways to be good stewards of our resources, while never losing sight of our mission to grow every child to their fullest potential.

The pace of change in our society is accelerating.  We must nurture continuous learning, and re-invention as a joyful habit for our students to equip them to thrive in the future.

We are also challenged with divisiveness, fear, and anger in our society.  I still believe that when we focus on investing in our students, we can come together.  I’ve seen it in countless PTA and parent volunteer meetings, and events: despite our different life experiences and priorities, we can all agree to do our best for the kids.

Lisa Kolodny

What motivates you to want to become a board member? When I found out that at my son’s school there were multiple suicides, I felt something needed to be done. One suicide was too many. Being a tutor at both the middle school and high school levels, I noticed that students were losing their enthusiasm by the time they reached high school. I felt that there was too much teaching to the test. I was also inspired by the excellence of PISD which I hope to continue.

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member? I have a Master of Arts in Education with certifications in Regular Education, Special Education, and ESL.    I have been a Special Education teacher.  For the past nine years, I have been a tutor in AVID where I have seen the impact of standardized testing and other pressures on the students and their enthusiasm for learning.    I have been certified as a Global Mobility Specialist and have been an International Destination Consultant, helping International families, many with school age children, settle in to the Dallas – Fort Worth area.  I have also been involved in PTA, volunteered for school trips, volunteered in the school library, theater programs, volunteered for field day, etc.

How long have you lived in this school district? I have lived here for 25 years, although I had an extended stay in Israel for 10 months. During that period though my voting address remained the same.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district? Although there is a push right now in the legislature to increase school funding, the legislature has been underfunding schools for a while now. In addition the Robin Hood program is broken, possibly causing PISD to head towards financial distress. While it is okay to have Robin Hood, it needs to be fixed by the state, including making it so that any funds from Robin Hood actually help schools and do not just go to the state. The funding formula needs to be fixed so that recapture does not take away an uncontrollable amount of money from PISD.

As a Trustee, I would be an advocate at the legislature for reform of Robin Hood as well as for more funding by the state for education. There needs to be more transparency with regards to where our tax dollars are going for standardized testing including the money towards administration of the tests and preparation for the tests. Therefore, I support implementing Transparency in Testing measures at the district level and I would advocate for it at the state level. Transparency in Testing would make explicit the true amount of funding that goes to standardized testing which is currently underreported.

I have also noticed there are problems with suicide and mental health in the district. I support and would build upon current efforts by the district to address this issue, including restorative circles, where students talk about their feelings. I would also place more of an emphasis on emotional counseling. I also think that there needs to be more done to make students more marketable post-graduation. This can include more internship opportunities.

Place 5

Semida Voicu

What motivates you to want to become a board member? I am a mom of five ranging from 12 years old to 19. I am involved in many levels of schooling and they are all important. Each grade comes with its own unique challenges and benefits. I want to be able to represent the many different stages in learning. Any number of kids is a lot. As parents we worry the same regardless of how many we have. It’s hard and rewarding work. We need a voice that hears our challenges and our hopes. Our kids spend 12 years in school and the PISD vision statement resonates with me: “To empower students to be able to adapt to new learning and career opportunities throughout their lives.” It’s a lifelong process with many different options and outcomes and we need to keep the needs and goals of the students and parents in mind to maintain and surpass the current goals.

What Particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board Member? I am involved in the local ptas in various schools. My kids are involved in music, sports, work as referees. I own my own independent real estate brokerage. I talk to people who want to move here. I listen to their needs and hopes.  I hold an MBA in Management. I facilitate and negotiate outcomes. I am emotionally, physically, and mentally invested in PISD and Plano on a daily basis. I invest time to learn new skills to help advocate for my children and clients and I will do the same for the students, teachers, and stakeholders of PISD.

How long have you lived in the District? I have lived in the PISD district for 19 years.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our district? We need to be proactive. There is a disconnect between the acknowledged educational and demographic trends and planned expenditures and projects.  We need to focus on the issues we can control and plan accordingly. The February 19th Board meeting showed a projected deficit of $26.4 million dollars.  How will this affect the students and teachers? I believe proactive educational and fiscal policies will help serve the needs of our students now and in the future. So we as parents can be assured at our children are getting the best education available.

David Stolle

What motivates you to want to become a board member?  The answer to this question is the same today as it was eight years ago, when I first ran and won a seat on the Plano ISD board of trustees:  I believe in the power of public education. I spent four years as a classroom teacher, and I have seen my former students grow into well-rounded, successful adults.  As a two-term incumbent, I am proud of the work we have done during the last eight years. I want to continue serving on the Plano ISD school board because I believe in its mission; I believe in its product; and I believe I am the right person to keep Plano ISD as one of the preeminent school districts in the State of Texas.     

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member? As noted above, my first career was in education.  I am a certified teacher in the State of Texas, and after college, I spent four years teaching high school English in Palestine, Texas.  I draw upon that experience every day to make decisions at the board table. Each time we address issues, I analyze the impact the board’s decision will have in the classroom, on teachers and on students.

My second (and current) career as a finance attorney has provided me important tools through which I make valuable contributions to the board of trustees.  My background in finance allows me to delve into and truly understand Plano ISD’s budget and finance strategies and the State’s flawed school finance system.As the state legislature begins its discussions on reforming the school finance system in Texas, it is critical for Plano ISD to have board leaders who understand this system, the flaws therein and the unintended consequences large scale reform can produce.  Reform does not equal a better deal for Plano ISD or its constituents. I will be on the forefront of this issue.

Also as noted above, I have served on the Plano ISD board for eight years.  I have a knowledge of the district and an understanding of the issues it faces only experience can provide.  This, along with my professional background in finance, gives me a unique perspective. A good example of this is my work, along with several other Plano ISD trustees, seeking “Taxparency.”  We want taxpayers to know why their property taxes were increasing and where that money was going. Simply stated, we want transparency in taxation. In the infancy of our Taxparency efforts, I wrote a white paper detailing the recent history of the state’s use of recapture dollars, overreliance on these recapture dollars, and use of local property value growth as a means of reducing its share of education spending.  This white paper was one of the seeds which allowed a grass-roots effort by a handful of Plano ISD trustees to grow into a statewide movement. I recently testified in Austin in support of a Taxparency bill which would require property tax statements to reflect how much of an individual taxpayer’s school taxes remain in the district and how much is sent to the state as recapture (or “Robin Hood”). Through our efforts, this bill has a very good chance of becoming law.

How long have you lived in this school district? I have lived in Plano ISD since 2002.  I have three children who have all matriculated through Jackson, Frankford, Shepton and Plano West.  My oldest son graduated in 2019, and my younger two graduate in 2019 and 2020. Additionally, my family lived in Plano when I was growing up, and I spent all six years of elementary school at Davis.  My experiences at Davis are what guided my wife and I back to Plano when we returned to the Metroplex. There is no other place I wanted to raise my children than right back in my first home town.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district? The broken school finance system is the most critical issue facing public education, both in our district and across the state.  The legislature is poised this session to tackle this issue, but without reform, the current school finance system will cripple Plano ISD.  Plano ISD’s recapture obligations have grown during my eight year tenure from $39.6 million to a projected payment this year of $208 million.  This growth in recapture has caused the Plano ISD board to adopt deficit budgets for two consecutive years, with another deficit budget projected for next year.  While the board and the district have been able to manage these deficits through prudent fiscal management and cost-saving measures, as the deficit grows, this will become increasingly more difficult to address.

From an education perspective, our challenges all revolve around addressing the individual needs of a very diverse student population.  Consider these statistics: (a) roughly 27% of our student population is economically disadvantaged; (b) 26% of our students are considered at-risk; and (c) another 26% of our student population reside in multi-family housing and may considered “mobile” students.  These students come to us with a set of challenges that are different than those of our students who do not fall within these categories. While it is the challenge of the district to address the needs of our most challenged students, we cannot do so at the expense of all other students.  We must also be mindful of our most gifted learners and the vast majority of our students falling between the most gifted and most challenged and continue challenging all students.

Place 6

Greyson M. Dunn

What motivates you to want to become a board member?  I have two children in the district, a 5yr old and a 3yr old and I want to have a positive impact on their education. To be specific, I want to bring personalized education to PISD. Personalized education is a system which evaluates each student’s education needs by subject. That information is then used to create a custom plan for that child, so that their individual needs can be addressed. For example, a child in the 1st grade may read at a 4th grade level while their math skills are at the expected 1st grade level. In a personalized education based system, that child will then have an education plan custom made for them that provides instruction at the 1st grade level for math, and at the 4th grade level for reading. Of course all other subjects will be treated accordingly as well. This type of individualized education allows a child to grow at an appropriate pace in each subject matter, while also allowing them to remain in the same classroom setting as their age group. Other attempts at addressing the education needs of gifted students, such as promoting them ahead, removes those students from their peer group and places them in a classroom with older students. This can lead to the child being excluded by those older students, feeling lonely and out of place. At a certain point, the child may even reject school altogether. Personalized education addresses the whole child through appropriate education among all subjects, while also allowing the child to mature naturally with their own peer group.

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member? I am an attorney practicing in Plano, and I am also pursuing an MBA at UTD where I have taken graduate level accounting classes. I feel that these skills will help me better understand the laws and legislation that affect the school district, as well as the important budgetary issues.

How long have you lived in this school district? I attended Richardson Independent School District throughout my primary education, graduating from Berkner High School, so I have a natural familiarity with the history of this area. I have lived in Plano since 2006.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district?Plano has always had an exceptional record for its school district, but other school districts have also increased in quality. It is time for PISD to move beyond just providing a high quality standard education, but also to innovate, to bring new ideas into the district. This can be done through personalized education. But as a Conservative, I also feel we should advance these improvements methodically and only after a careful study of the differing methods of implementation. As we grow and achieve better educational opportunities for our residents, I feel that a secondary benefit to implementing personalized education is attracting the type of businesses that we want in Plano. Plano is growing and nothing will stop that, but we want it to grow the right way, by bringing in businesses with highly educated and therefore highly paid employees. Those leading businesses and their employees value excellence in education, and are concerned with the quality of education their children receive. A major step towards attracting those businesses to Plano, is having an excellent and innovative primary school system. My goal is to one day have a Plano family with the ability and means to send their child anywhere, for example Hockaday or St Mark’s, but instead choose to remain in-district for their children’s education. An exemplary primary education system in Plano will help all students in the district, regardless of income or social status. Our primary goal as a community should be to provide an education system that allows all children to reach their full potential, that will elevate our community as a whole.

Jeri Chambers

What motivates you to want to become a board member? Serving as a Plano ISD board member is the perfect application of my diverse and long-time professional and community involvement in both formal and informal educational experiences in Plano and Collin County.

My motivation is to help continue Plano’s excellence in education. I believe a strong and thriving public school district makes for a strong and thriving community.  

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member? I am a teacher.  I taught middle school math at Wilson Middle School and 5th grade math and language arts at Wells Elementary.  I served as a team leader at both schools. In addition, I have served as a home bound teacher and a Title I teacher at Otto Middle School.

I am a parent.  Both my children attended PISD schools from Kindergarten through graduation from Plano Senior High School.  They had an amazing education to launch their life-long success. My parent volunteer commitment included the following: PTA membership and volunteering, basketball booster club, band booster club (Yay Band!), and test reader during exams at both Plano Senior and Vines High School. I have also served on School Based Improvement Committees (SBICs) and the District School Based Improvement Committee (DBIC)

I am a community volunteer. As a member of the Junior League of Collin County, I am a founder of Sci-Tech Discover Center—a hands-on interactive STEM experience that provides mind-stretching fun for children of all ages.  I am a past president of Plano Youth Leadership and a member of the Plano Education Foundation Board. I am a graduate of Leadership Plano and Leadership North Texas.

I am a business woman. As a donor relations officer for Communities Foundation of Texas, I work with individuals, families and business to connect resources with community need.

How long have you lived in this school district? We have lived in Plano ISD since 1994.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district?
Our students’ educational requirements are always changing and evolving. The district must continue to deliver education excellence in a manner that meets the educational needs of ALL students. These changes demand more from our teachers and staff. At the same time focus must be placed on optimizing school finance to provide necessary resources.   

We must do the following:
1) Advocate for school finance reform that includes property tax relief
2) Be strategic with our financial resources to maximize student success for all.
3) Provide the professional development and resources our teachers need to drive successful student outcomes.
4) Support our teachers with the benefits and salary they need to maintain a standard of living that allows them to live in the communities where they teach.

Place 7

Dylan Rafaty

What motivates you to want to become a board member? As a proud Plano ISD product and dedicated public servant for different communities, it has been my hope to continue to serve in a large capacity where my skills and abilities will contribute greatly. The Plano ISD School Board needs to have fresh, young individuals who are passionate in serving all students in public education.

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member? As a former Special Education graduate at Plano West – Class of 2009, the education route in college was never easy. This led me to self-publish my book on my personal education experiences that discussed the importance of having transitional guidance throughout my journey in education. However, I did receive my associate degree at Collin College and this summer; I’m set to receive a bachelor’s degree on Industrial and Organizational Psychology.

My current entrepreneurship and work backgrounds include Chief Navigation Officer at DylanListed (focused on Transition, Employment and Entrepreneurship for People with Disabilities) and Director of Community Development and Disability Engagement at C-Hear, Inc. My past work experiences include Manager of Disability Engagement at iCode East Frisco and Disability Diversity Trainer & Consultant at NextCareer Consulting.

My current volunteerism background includes Committee Member for the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities, Plano ISD Special Education Advisory Board Committee, Care and Mercy Foundation and Chairman for the Social Responsibility Committee at the International Association for Ice Cream Distributors and Vendors.

Throughout my entrepreneurship journey in the last 8 years, I have displayed many leadership qualities that will make me an incredible asset to serve on the Plano ISD School Board. These leadership qualities include proven management, leadership, communication, relationship-building, community engagement/outreach, public relations, the ability to have courage to stand up for what is morally and ethically correct including being an advocate on important legislative matters in Texas and the United States.

Within the last two years, I have devoted my time locally to learn about the issues and concerns happening within the City of Plano and Plano ISD. I, still, continuously meet different community leaders, advocates and elected officials on ways we can collaborate and work inclusively on matters pertaining to people with disabilities, education or special education, housing and transportation. I am also a proud graduate from the Plano Citizens Academy where I’ve learned the essential functions that occur within different city departments and interesting statistics about the Plano community. There’s still much more work to be done but if elected; I am committed and prepared to take on this responsibility.

How long have you lived in this school district? I have lived in Richardson as I was attending the Classical Magnet School in Richardson ISD until moving before the start of 3rd grade to attend Rose Mary Haggar Elementary in Far North Dallas (southern part of Collin County). I have attended Plano ISD schools ever since when I graduated in 2009 from Plano West Senior High School. Before seeking independence from living with my family; I have lived in Plano since the fall of 2015. I’m a proud, young Plano resident and it is my hope to continue to live in the city I call home.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district?There are three initial areas of interest that I care about which includes boosting transparency efforts in Plano ISD to increase community participation, the need for Strengthening Special Education efforts to boost educational and training opportunities for families and to focus on culture where it values everyone including our educators by providing the tools and resources to empower all students.

If elected, my hope is to review and investigate its current non-discrimination (or ERO) policy, potential school board term limits, the need for best practices on handling mental health/bullying in schools, assisting economically-disadvantaged youth, increasing opportunities for Pre-K expansion, healthy food options for our elementary youth, transparency in testing and exploring into blended learning opportunities for all students.

In addition, it is important to note that during this legislative session; our state legislature is working towards possible solutions to develop school finance and property tax reforms in Texas. This Spring, I have and will continue to travel to Austin to advocate and collaborate with our legislatures to provide long-term plan to help benefit school districts like Plano ISD.

Khalid Ishaq

What motivates you to want to become a board member? I started to get involved with not just the school but also the PISD administration when my daughter enrolled in the then brand new Schell elementary school back over 10 years ago. What motivates me now is that I am concerned about the future of education in our schools, I feel through my children that we could have done better in providing them not just the best education but also in making them good citizens of not just Plano, but the world, and along the way help in managing how our hard earned money is spent

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member?

  • I have a Masters in software engineering from SMU and have led large deployments for many multinational companies like Verizon, ATT, Gamestop, Neiman Marcus etc and thus have experience in managing people and large budgets.
  • I have been an adjunct professor teaching in the evening at a number of universities including SMU, Boston University, Devry and others
  • Worked on the Diversity Advisory Council (2007-9) and Career and Technology Education Committee (2018-2019) with the PISD
  • 3 children that went through K-12 in the PISD
  • Passionate about education and making PISD the destination for the best education in the united states for families

How long have you lived in this school district?

  • Over 19 years within the PISD
  • Over 29 years in the Dallas area

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district?

  • Transparency in fund distribution
  • Adapting to the changing requirements of education to better prepare our children to earn a living
  • Mental and Social health of our children
  • Reduce our tax burden
  • Creating ethical leaders


Cody Weaver

What motivates you to want to become a board member?  I love Plano and I love what this community has accomplished over the past few decades. We produce community leaders and academic achievers that universities & employers pursue. I want to preserve and enhance what we’ve built so more students can reach their full potential. Families have been moving to Plano for years so their children have the opportunity to achieve academic excellence. My wife and I moved back to Plano for that same reason. As current school board leadership steps down, I see an opportunity to serve my community. With an open mind and an open heart, I am committed to the enduring success of Plano ISD. Together, we can educate a generation of lifelong learners and lifelong earners.

What particular skills or experiences in education qualify you to serve as a school board member? I am a graduate of Texas A&M University where I studied Agricultural Leadership Education & Development. I also completed a minor in Business Administration. My many years of Real Estate experience have taught me how to negotiate for the best possible outcomes. Upholding my fiduciary duties and always putting the interests of my clients over my own has prepared me for this opportunity. I will always put the interests of our students above all else. I will listen and learn from our parents and teachers. I will always remember who I serve- the citizens of Plano and all families that reside within PISD.

I currently serve as a member on the Texas Association of Realtors Professional Standards Committee and Education Sub-Committee. Real Estate education and mentorship is a passion of mine.  

How long have you lived in this school district? My wife is a proud Plano ISD graduate. We moved back to Plano a little over 18 months ago. I may be new to Plano, but my wife, her family, and the values we share have been here for a very long time.

What do you see as the current challenges facing public education in our state/district? Our most pressing issue in Plano ISD is our ballooning recapture payment. The impact of this will be compounded by the projected enrollment decline that could see numbers below 52,000 students in the next few years. According to Randy McDowell, CFO, we could pay anywhere between $241M-$261M in recapture payments for the 2019-2020 school year. This has the potential to leave us with a $20M+ deficit for the next two school years and a $40M+ deficit for the 2021-2022 school year. Until our state legislators can find a solution for Robin Hood, we must adopt a fiscally prudent, zero-based budget that will ensure the needs of our students and teachers are met. Efficient use of our financial resources is a top priority of mine.

I am also committed to improving school safety and security. Parents need to feel confident in their child’s safety every time they drop their student off at school. I would support a policy that helps coordinate our teachers, administrators, and first responders during a crisis event. Training and preparation are key when responding to a crisis event. We have a duty to explore all options that enhance campus security and keep our students safe. Additionally, I would initiate a safe and timely parent- student reunification process after a crisis. Safety and security of our students includes their social and emotional well-being.

 

Join the Conversation! Send us an email.. let us know your thoughts about these candidates or any other questions you want us to ask. Stay tuned for more on these and other candidates running for local positions in our City Council and Collin College. And be sure to share this post with your friends who should all be informed to be able to cast their vote in the upcoming elections!

 

 

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Abbie

Hi, I’m Abbie, super mom, and busy-bee who moved to Plano from London, England with my husband and 2 kids, Jesse and Lucy, in the Summer of 2013. Plano Moms was my lifeline when I arrived as I didn’t know anyone or anything about my new city that I now called home. Where did I start to make friends and meet moms like me? How did I know who were the best hairstylists, or dentists or pre-school options for my kids? Which area should I look for to find the right home and school for my son? All these questions were answered by Plano Moms, like me. I found a lifeline in it and chose to build it into the community it is today – 15,000 moms sharing ideas, tips, referrals and making connections with each other through Social Media, Planomoms.com, events & regular email newsletters! When I’m not being a Plano Mom or being a taxi service to my kids, I am coaching & consulting local businesses, working out, cooking and reading (when I find the time!)

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