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San Diego County, CA November 4, 2008 Election
Smart Voter Political Philosophy for Linda Vanderveen

Candidate for
Board Member; Poway Unified School District

This information is provided by the candidate

I am committed to ongoing and open communication between all stake holders in our schools-the parents, students, faculty, staff, administrators, the public and board members. I welcome community input and involvement because a large part of our success is due to the supportive parents and communities in which we live. We share the successes as well as the "needs to improve". Test scores continue to rise and our newly renovated schools are testimony to the community's commitment to our Building For Success program. People move to PUSD for the schools. Clearly, we are doing something right.

The stability and foresight of the current school board allows educators the luxury of actually educating without having to deal with personal agendas. Poway Unified School District (PUSD) ranks among the top school districts in the state for many reasons. Parents are involved and the community as a whole values public education. Our staff is dedicated and hard working and our administrators are second to none.

Obviously, we don't need to change what we're doing, but we do need to increase student centered learning. We need to make the UC and CSU college entry standards known as "a-g" courses the default curriculum. Our career and technical courses and electives must align with a-g requirements so every class will have relevancy for students. Students (and their parents) must become partners in their own learning. We need to develop alternative pathways to learning such as online courses, virtual classrooms, middle college, and AVID expansion. We must make sure our students are prepared for life in our rapidly changing world.

There is a direct correlation between student achievement and student success. Subgroups in PUSD score higher than their county and state counterparts, but we must do better to help each student score at the college readiness levels of Proficient or Advanced on the California Standards Tests. We can close the gap by utilizing the framework of Rigor (high expectations for all), Relevance (engagement and personalized learning) and Relationships (personal connections for every student). We must differentiate instruction for the individual learner, trying new strategies and approaches, to ensure high levels of learning and personal success for every student.

I care deeply about PUSD and want every student to be successful. As a long time school and community volunteer and mother of three college graduates who attended PUSD schools K-12, I possess the knowledge, experience and perspective to help PUSD become the number one district in the state. My record speaks to my honesty, accessibility, and total commitment to the students, parents and staff of our district. I've spent time in almost every district department, including food services and special ed; I've ridden on bus routes and visit every school regularly.

I am known for asking the tough questions everyone else is thinking. Voters can count on me to continue working tirelessly to achieve the district vision of preparing every student with the skills and knowledge needed for academic and professional success in the 21st century.

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: October 1, 2008 23:31
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