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District 1 WCSB Candidates

District 1 is a large district that covers primarily Fairview, southwest Williamson County, and a portion of Spring Hill south of Buckner Road and west of Highway 31. If you vote at Westwood Elementary, the Fairview Rec Center, the former Pinewood Elementary, Burwood Community Center, or the new Church of the City Spring Hill precinct (Autumn Ridge, Belshire, Shannon Glen, Tanyard Springs, Witt Hill and along Wilkes Lane), you’re in District 1. Confirm your district by entering your address here.


Richard Davis


Facebook page: Liked by District 5 WCSB candidate Julie Mauck; Facebook friends with J. Lee Douglas, Glen Casada, Jeremy DurhamJulie Mauck and Stuart Cooper

Website: N/A

Twitter: N/A

Current school engagement: Father of a son at Independence High and a daughter at Hillsboro Middle

Professional: Supervisor at Williamson County Solid Waste Department; aerospace degree from MTSU

History: Moved to Williamson County when he was five, Franklin High School graduate; family in Williamson since 1790

Politics: Ran for the Williamson County Commission in 2010 and garnered 155 votes; self-identifies as Conservative

Other groups and associations: Hillsboro/Leipers Fork Recreation Association board member

Public social media posts: N/A

“I think I’m going in it for the right reasons. I just want to help. I’m a people person.” “Those are our top-end students, and I don’t feel they’re getting nearly enough support that they should. I think we need to do more for them.”

“When I asked my son what he got out of it, he couldn’t think of anything. I thought that was kind of sad.”

“I think we need to catch kids at a younger age to get the biggest impact. In middle school, my son saw a gifted teacher for 30 minutes once a month if that.”

“I think I can help gain a consensus on different items. I work well with others. I may not agree with everything you say, but I’m not going to beat you up over your views.”

“I don’t see how they can get anything done when they get to arguing so bad. It gets so polarized, and I think everyone needs to take a breath and remember why they’re there — they’re there for the kids and that’s it.”

“If you’re a public official, you’re supposed to remember you’re representing your constituents and county constantly. You’re not supposed to do things to make them look bad. If I disagree with something you tell me, there’s a right way for me to get something across to you.”

Angela Durham

DurhamCandidate, (615) 479-7773

Facebook page: Liked by District 3 WCSB candidate Christy Coleman, District 6 WCSB member Jay Galbreath

Website: N/A

Current school engagement: Active PTO leader and mother of rising fifth and seventh graders at Fairview schools, 2015-16 PTO President at FVMS; did not attend the 5/16 WCSB Candidate Panel on Special Education

Professional: Vice president of anesthesia service for Amsurg; bachelor’s degree in management from Lipscomb, MBA

History: Moved to Middle Tennessee from Memphis to attend Lipscomb University, relocated to Williamson County from Bellevue for the schools

Politics: Has never run for office

Other groups and associations: Crosspoint Community Church board member

Endorsements: WillCo Rising PAC, former District 1 WCSB member Ken Peterson, retired Fairview Middle School Principal Gary Shrader

Public social media posts: N/A

“I don’t really have a stance on anything or an opinion yet. It’s always better to go in with an open mind and not have an agenda. I want to get in there and listen, learn, hear the concerns, the complaints. Try to understand and try to construct reasonable plans to address them.” “I’d like to set up an environment where kids can thrive and learn and be good contributors to society.”

District 1 Home Page Candidate Survey Responses

Richard DavisAngela Durham…what’s your philosophy on school rezoning, grandfathering and the anticipation of future growth for rezoning?When it comes to rezoning, the first thing you look at is the transportation times down. I don’t want them spending a lot of time getting to school. I want them to spend more quality time inside the building. That’s the big thing about rezoning.I agree with letting a child stay where they are when it comes to grandfathering. Continuity is a big thing for me. I was lucky to have the same second-grade teacher as my father. The same teachers I had in high school my younger brother had. I think Fairview is very lucky. They’ve not been touched by the explosive growth. In District One, we reach all the way down to Thompson’s Station and Spring Hill. That’s where the growth spot is. Thompson’s Station is unrecognizable to me compared to when I was young. I’ve seen it all grow. It was all farm land when I was in school.Rezoning is a non-negotiable. If we desire to continue seeing growth in our county, we must project the growth and adequately plan for the impact the new families will have on our schools.We have an excellent group of individuals focused on building new schools and renovating existing schools to accommodate the incoming students. A natural result of this growth is going to be the need to rezone students in the most logical way. Nonetheless, we can do our best to be empathetic to those families who are more adversely impacted than others due to the rezoning.We can make it as painless for those families as possible by offering grandfathering in certain situations such as those where a student may be in his/her last year in that school or where he/she have siblings. There will be some families who will not mind the rezoning and some who welcome it. For those who need or want an exception, we simply need to continue our current process of accepting applications for an open-zoned school in order to be as flexible as reasonably possible.What is your position on standardized testing – is there too much, too little?Standardized testing is something you have to have a certain amount of. I would like to see a good mixture of standardized and individual testing. Not everyone fits in one box. But I think overall it’s been fairly good for my kids.I grew up in Tennessee and can remember looking forward to that one week near the end of the school year where we had no homework and got to bring games and snacks like Moon Pies and cheese crackers to school to have between tests.While it was stressful to know I would be scored and evaluated, I knew it wasn’t an option, and I did my best. We have to have a way to measure performance of teachers and students, and the standardized tests are as good of a way to do so as any, as they offer unbiased, cross-cutting snap shots into the students’ level of understanding in key areas. If given my preference, I would structure the testing where it occurs over a shorter period of time on a more regular basis (say, every 9 weeks over a 2-day period, focused only on the content the students are expected to learn for that period).Coming from the business world where we set goals and key performance indicators in the beginning of each year, I think that if the leaders held an in-depth, annual teacher orientation of the year’s expectations for teaching and learning metrics, and then gave the teachers adequate time to submit their plans for achievement of those metrics, then the teachers would have a very clear-cut series of goals to accomplish with the students.I believe we need to take into consideration retention of information learned and conduct our assessments while the information is fresh in their minds.All in all, the tests are important because at the end of day, we need to understand our strengths and weaknesses in order to make course corrections and impact change. These standardized tests allow for that evaluation and subsequent change.Having said that, I also recognize that there is more than one way to skin a cat, and I am always open to hearing alternative ways of accomplishing the end goal of high achievement in our schools. Additionally, I recognize that it adds a lot of stress to some students to be subject to the scrutiny our tests impose. It puts us at a disadvantage to put those kids in a situation where we know they won’t perform well. I would be interested in having someone evaluate whether we could possibility implement some type of alternative testing for those students whose families request an exception to the typical testing methods.What is your position on Common Core?I am not a fan of Common Core for the same reason. It seems like a one size fits all. I am curious to see what comes in after, and I am looking forward to it.My son is in the gifted program, and he looks at things different. He had to go through every little step, and for him it was tedious. It was a different experience with my daughter. They are two different people, and so they do things different. That’s why I don’t think one size fits all works.Kudos to the experts who acknowledged something wasn’t going well. Our leaders and educators recognized a gap in learning and gave it a valiant effort to try Common Core as a solution. If the experts agree that perhaps we aren’t getting the results we had hoped for, then let’s get rid of it.We should always have measures and evaluations in place to track our success in initiatives. If an initiative fails, let’s move on to the next potential solution. There is never just one way to achieve success, and I believe it is our job as leaders to explore and research and identify those alternatives.What do you think of current state education standards?I think it’s all relative to your frame of reference. We’ve done excellent on the state level, and we are starting to make inroads on the national level. I would like to see us make inroads on the world level.My perception based on what I see with my own children in their homework and ongoing testing is that the standards are reasonable and straightforward. I am perhaps overly practical in my views about education, but I believe that we have a few key responsibilities: (1) ensure that the students are exposed to as much as possible in the various subjects, because only exposure can help them find themselves and learn their passions and interests – without the exposure, they won’t have the opportunity to determine what they are good at and where they want to go with their lives; (2) ensure that the content we are teaching them is reasonable for their levels of education; (3) ensure that we have special programs in place to help those children who have different learning styles, special needs or who simply need extra attention to succeed.Do you think world religions should be part of history or social studies curricula?I think it goes back to what I said – everything should be equal across the board. It’s a touchy subject for a lot of people. But I think to be fair, you have to be fair across the board with everything, and I don’t know how else better to say that.Let’s face it. World religion is a vital part of our history. It should be acknowledged at a high level, in an unbiased and factual manner. Period. I personally find all of the various religions fascinating and believe that we should take an interest in understanding others’ religious histories in order to empathize with and support others with different beliefs. However, the reality is that religion is one of those areas where people can be passionate and emotionally charged, and in the public school system, we should avoid encouraging open discussion in the learning environment about matters that, for some, contain a lot of sensitivity and personal agendas.Given the sensitivity and personal belief systems at play, we should limit the teaching to specific facts, limited discussion and with no bias by the teachers conducting the lesson. Having attended a Christian school, I have seen religion taught in a classroom setting with individuals of varying beliefs. It can be done if presented the right way.The bottom line is that, as with any history subject, it needs to be taught. We can’t deny that religious groups and beliefs have had major impact on our country and world. Would I prefer, due to the sensitivity and emotional charge related to religion, that I be the one teaching my own children? By all means.Perhaps a compromise might be to allow parents to review the specific content associated with the class and provide written consent for the student to be part of the class. Or perhaps the teaching should only occur at the high school level as an elective, allowing other parts of history to be addressed in the younger years. I don’t have the answer, but I am open-minded enough to hear other perspectives and have open dialogue about the pros, cons and arguments for or against.What is your opinion of the current state of WCS and the current leadership?Obviously, they’ve done a pretty good job. As someone who went through the school system and graduated in 1981, it’s greatly improved.I say kudos to everyone that’s put their two cents worth into everything, but there is always room for improvement. My personal life and business are two separate things. And when you’re on the school board, you’re simply there to take care of the kids and the tax payer money. The way anyone else feels about anyone else doesn’t matter. You’re there for those two simple things.I think it’s great. I love the way Dr. [Mike] Looney communicates openly and shares his vision. He leads with passion and conviction and is open to hearing the ideas and opinions of others.He makes decisions in what I believe to be a thoughtful and conscientious way and has our school system’s best interest at heart. He has great ideas and thinks strategically and outside the box, which is important for any leader.We cannot grow without vision, and he has it. Additionally, I believe we have excellent school leaders in the Fairview system. Our principals clearly have a passion and commitment for our schools. We have the right people in the right spots.What is the best thing about WCS?I think they are doing a good job of preparing my kids for the future. One of the greatest assists is there is so much community involvement from parents to the employees.Everyone involved seems to strive to give my kids the best education they can get, and I fully appreciate that.The parental involvement, engagement and investment in our schools is amazing.I have never seen so many generous and engaged families, from donating money, resources and time, to promoting school events, sports activities, etc. People come to this county for the excellent schools, and their involvement and support of the schools is evident. Additionally, the community support is amazing. In Fairview alone, our local businesses and large businesses provide an incredible amount of donations to our schools. The teachers, staff and school personnel are also heavily engaged and committed.I love it when we attend a school-related event and we see our school personnel at the events, participating, smiling and supporting the initiatives at hand.What needs attention and what aspect of it could need adjustment?One thing, and I am little biased on some things, but it amazed me this year that my son left before I went to work. The transportation department has had their hands tied with a shortage of drivers. I would like to see that get fixed. Instead of it being a long bus ride I would rather them come to school fresh.I also want to see more options for gifted and special education students.But I would like to say thank you to everyone who’s helped my kids to where they are now. I don’t want to make anything worse. I just want to make things better.I want to give myself time to hear what the opinions and experiences are from those who have been in this for a while and who have lived through generations of children flowing through the school system.I am the first person to admit that there is plenty I don’t know yet, but I am also extremely open-minded, unbiased and interested in supporting this county to continue growing and thriving.Sitting on the board of my church, I have learned that my job isn’t to dictate or force my own agenda, but rather to represent the voices of those in the community and to ensure that the vision, mission, values, goals and objectives are adhered to and accomplished. The only way an individual can be effective is to seek to understand by listening.We are here to support those who carry out the day to day operational matters related to education. I view the board as the business arm of the school system. If given an issue to address, I will dedicate the time to investigating and understanding the issue in order to offer an educated opinion.


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