"Raise my taxes, and/or taxes in my community, to cover the DPS shortfall”
Previous Board Service:
Tattered Cover (2021 - 2023)
Citywide Banks (2021-2023)
DPS Foundation (2021 - 2023)
Downtown Denver Partnership (2021 - 2023)
Goals & Metrics:
100% of teachers, students, and staff reporting significant increases in safety and perceptions of safety
100% of graduating students career and college ready & 100% of 3rd graders reading on level
100% of teachers of color reporting increases in support and interest in staying in DPS
As the son of a Denver Public Schools teacher and a DPS graduate, my primary objective is to place academics at the forefront of our efforts. This priority is underlined by the belief that our main mission is to cultivate a thriving educational environment. Yet, I recognize the intricate balance that comes with this decision-making process; the reality is that students face significant barriers to learning if they do not feel secure. Thus, while the sequence—prioritizing academics first, safety second, and mental health third—may initially appear as a paradox, it is rooted in a holistic vision. A school system, at its core, must champion academic excellence as its guiding light. However, this beacon is only effective when illuminated with an unwavering commitment to ensuring the safety and mental well-being of every student.
The goals we have outlined are not merely aspirational—they are designed to be transformative. By setting an ambitious target of 100% improvement for all stakeholders, we are making a resolute commitment to drive change. Utilizing disaggregated data, we gain insights into specific areas that demand our focus and can adjust our approach accordingly. Over the next four years, we expect palpable progression in three fundamental areas: academic outcomes, school safety, and notably, the retention of teachers of color. Each of these aspects is interconnected, working synergistically towards an inclusive and thriving educational ecosystem. We are not just setting goals; we are paving the way for a more diverse, safe, and academically outstanding future for our students and staff.
Regarding our budget shortfalls, I strongly believe that as a state we underfund our public schools. We desperately need to reform TABOR to provide critical resources Denver does better than most jurisdictions, but our schools are still underfunded. I personally will help run a transportation mill levy in 2024 to bring in more funding for the district.
While I do advocate for increased taxes to fund our schools, I believe I possess a unique financial background to ensure we are properly allocating spending in the district.