Letter To The Editor: Hargraves Endorses Bernstein

By BILL HARGRAVES
School Board Member
Los Alamos Public Schools

I am a member of the LAPS School Board and I endorse Christine Bernstein for the LAPS School Board (District 3 Aspen).

Christine has been an active, in-the-classroom teacher for over 20 years, including several years in Los Alamos Public Schools, giving her an expertise in areas that distinguish her from her opponent. If elected, Christine would be the only Board member also actively teaching students.

As a teacher, she has the knowledge and the skills to work effectively with other Board members, lead committees, and make real change and accomplish the goals of the district because she has headed accreditation committees, works as a team with other teachers and decision-makers every day, and is always serving the needs of her students.

Christine plans, speaks, and works towards the future and does not rely solely on past accomplishments. She has a vision for improving the LAPS system to serve the needs of all students.

School Boards approve specific curriculum for classroom use.  Christine sees first-hand, every day, how curriculum decisions support and impact students and, through her teaching skills, uses curriculum to support every student in her classroom. Christine brings a teacher’s perspective to the selection and approval of curriculum which is a vital perspective that is currently missing from our Board. 

School Boards set policy for the district. Christine has is a deeper, more informed understanding of policy impacts on education because she has seen the effects, and, in fact, lives the effects, of policy on her practice as an educator. She knows the breadth and detail of current school board policy because she is currently living in the effects of said policy­. Christine understands and observes on a daily basis how decisions made by the school board affect student learning and behaviors in the classroom–a perspective that is vital, yet lacking, in current Board decision-making.

School Boards also determine the budget for the district. Christine has extensive knowledge of school budgets and how budget decisions impact what happens in the classroom, again, because she lives in it. She has managed budgets for student groups and organizations, successfully worked within often very limited budgets, and fundraised for various groups, including as the Student Council supervisor at LAHS. We have had several conversations about the current LAPS budget and she is well-informed about the status of funding in the district.

Christine has three children currently attending Los Alamos Public Schools. From my own experience as a school board member, I know how important this is. Christine, through her children, is able to see, every day, what is going on in classrooms at LAPS and the current educational culture in Los Alamos. Having children currently attending LAPS schools further distinguishes Christine from her opponent and gives her an important perspective as a voice for those students who may need more in order to thrive: a voice for those students in the middle.

Christine has an incredible passion for education, a tireless energy that is contagious, and offers a skillset that only a teacher can provide. I urge you to join me in supporting Christine Bernstein and vote for her for LAPS School Board.

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