Stay-at-home Mom (Inactive teacher & behavior specialist)
Current School board member (incumbent)
Family: Casey Harris, Novartis/Sandoz; Three children
In Her Words:
Q: What do you consider to be the three most important challenges facing the Montgomery School District at this time? Briefly, how would you address these issues?
The three biggest challenges that Montgomery is facing:
The reopening of schools. Ensuring a safe way for children to go to school with COVID-19.
Increasing inclusiveness and equity within our community.
Creating full day kindergarten."
Q: What professional and personal experiences have prepared you for serving on the board?
I feel that I can bring an important perspective to the board. Not only am I a parent of a child in the district, but I also hold my masters in elementary education and currently a BCBA candidate. I have first hand classroom experience. I’ve taught 2nd grade and preschoolers with autism. I’ve worked as a behavior specialist in early intervention. During this time I worked along side with families, as well as, the children. I can help relate to the teachers.
I’m a mother of three children who have already taught me a lifetime of lessons. I can also have that valuable perspective as a parent. I care. I possess the morals, values, and balance needed.
Since February 2019 I have been a part of the Montgomery Board of Education. It’s an honor to be apart of the board during this time. I commend every board member for all their hard work. Taking on this role has shown me how hard each member works. It has shown me up close how hard each teacher and member of the administration works. This is an invaluable experience I feel lucky to have.
There is a huge learning curve to joining the board. I feel that during this critical time I can be more of an asset as a familiar yet still the newest member of the board."
Q: Why are you running for the board?
For the children. The best interest of the children is priority. Children need to feel safe and be in a school environment where they can thrive. We all have a very important role. I believe in this township. I find comfort in this school’s mission statement- The children are our future. I want these kids to succeed. They need diversity. Quality educational experiences. A caring environment. Education does not stop in the classroom and does not only include academics. There is so much more to learn. We cannot do this alone. We need to all be on the same team.
I’ve been apart of this board since February. I feel as though I am not ready to have my time end. I’ve been apart of creating and chairing the ARRC committee (Anti-Racism and Reform Committee). As a new committee, we are off to a strong start and I hope to be apart of this incredible journey. I also serve on several other committees as well.
I want to continue to help shape these well rounded students and open minded leaders.
To enforce the portrait of a graduate and our district’s strategic plan. Help each stakeholder to work together. Bridge any gaps among students. Create balance. Increase inclusiveness and mental health awareness. We need to accommodate for each student- provide extra support for high achievers, the resources for special education, and each additional child."
Q: The success of Montgomery Schools impacts everyone in Montgomery and Rocky Hill, whether they have a student enrolled in the district, have a home whose value is impacted, or both. What role should the community play in forming policy and monitoring the school district? Is the current structure adequate? If not, what do you propose to improve transparency and community involvement?
Communication is key. We need full transparency. There are so many wonderful programs and individuals who work so hard each day to create a community with a reputation like Montgomery. We want our community involved and want everyone to know they have a voice. I would like to see more ways we can communicate all the wonderful things being done so the community knows as well."
Q: Should Montgomery offer in-person classes during the pandemic? What about sports? What parameters would you implement?
There is a great deal of unknowns with COVID-19. The safety of our children and teachers is a priority. Each family needs to do what they feel comfortable with during this historical time. There is no right or wrong answer. There are pros and cons to having in-person classes, as well as, virtual. Each family should do what they feel is best for their children and family."