Kevin Melcher

Kevin Melcher

Photographs provided by candidates or their campaign committees.

Kevin C  

for University Board of Regents 10


Candidate contact information:

Email address:

Phone number: (775) 397-7536

Facebook: @melcher4regent

Twitter: @kcmelcher





Please share briefly what inspired you to run for this office and why you feel you’re qualified for the position.


Kevin Melcher is a lifelong supporter of education as a student, teacher, coach, administrator and member of the Nevada State Board of Education and NSHE Board of Regents. His past work and involvement fuels his inspiration to once again serve on the Board of Regents.

Melcher served as Regent from 2011-2016 and is well-prepared for an NSHE leadership position again. He was appointed by Governor Brian Sandoval to the Nevada State Board of Education from 2013-2015 and was also appointed by Governor Steve Sisolak in 2019 to fill a vacated term through 2020. Kevin spent 22 years as a K-12 administrator.

Kevin understands the importance of working with and supporting higher education leaders as they advance our institutions. Kevin Melcher has the experience to help lead NSHE through these difficult times of change.

As a Regent, Melcher served on numerous committees and was chair of the Investment Committee. He was also chair of the Truckee Meadows Community College and Great Basin College President Search Committees.
Kevin Melcher is a native Nevadan and graduated from Reno High School in 1974 and graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno in 1979, and 1981 with a Masters degree.


What are your views on providing age-appropriate, medically-accurate, culturally-inclusive sex-ed to Nevada’s students?


During my teaching years, I was a Health Teacher for 10th grade students. Part of the curriculum included sex education and I enjoyed teaching it very much. Times have certainly changed since I taught sex education but I worked very hard to provide truthful and factual information to students. I believe it is critically important that students be taught to understand sex education, respect choices of others and to be medically accurate in information presented. When a respectful atmosphere is created, students can better understand views that may differ from their own. Regarding higher education, we need to make sure that students entering the teaching ranks are provided with quality instructional practices.


If elected, what strategies or policies can be implemented to keep racially-based threats and other discriminatory behaviors out of our schools to keep our children safe?


Higher education has been developing quality programs for students and staff to help eliminate racially-based threats and provide support services to students. It is extremely important that teachers at all levels be trained to lead conversations with their students to help eliminate discriminatory behaviors no matter what type of threats students may face. On-going work in this area is critical to the wellbeing of all students. In Higher Education, it is important for students to lead many of these strategies and help develop appropriate policies.


What do you believe is the best approach to ensure all of Nevada’s children have access to a quality education?


All students deserve quality education and one way we can help to achieve this is to encourage our very best teachers to work with students in need. Strengthening our K-12 system is critical. Providing needed transportation, nutrition and encouraging involvement of parents from all backgrounds and cultures is important in delivering quality education for everyone. Programs such as Communities in Schools can help bridge gaps for children and families needing support.


What steps should be taken to ensure the safety of Nevada’s children in our schools and communities? How would you specifically address the potential for gun violence in our schools?


Guns do not belong in schools. But beyond guns, we need to always keep evaluating our schools and the environments to help keep students safe. This is not an area where we can assume everything is safe. We must be vigilant towards school safety at all times.


How should Nevada address the ongoing difficulties to effectively and equitably fund public schools across the diverse landscape of the state? How will you use your position to address this issue?


I believe funding needs to be a major priority for legislative action. If Nevada education funding is going to be equitable, we all need to work together and the amount of funding needs to grow considerably. Without new funding, we will just keep taking from some to give to others. I will work hard to support increased state funding for both K-12 and higher education. We also need to work together to find ways to save money and share services when appropriate and feasible.


What do you see as the government’s role in providing students with access to different education choices (including magnet programs, charter schools, homeschooling, etc) to meet a variety of unique needs? What standards do you think should apply across schooling options?



I am a firm supporter of public education. However, I do realize there are needs in some areas to provide different programs to meet student and community needs. No matter what is type of school is provided, it all comes down to quality of education services. No one type of schooling is immune from poor education quality if we do not hold everyone accountable.



What are the biggest issues facing the education community in Nevada, and how do you propose to solve them?


Funding - we need to push for increased state funding for our public schools. This needs to be ongoing and money needs to be well spent.
North vs. South and Urban vs. Rural - Nevada is very unique in being very rural yet very urban. Many times these two conflict greatly. We need to make sure laws are written so they address the needs in all areas of our diverse state.


How can Nevada disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline to ensure that students are not prematurely introduced to the criminal justice system?



We need to make sure that students and families have appropriate support early in a student’s life. This is not just a school issue, it is a society issue. Schools can be a major player in this area but community developed programs are necessary.



How should our schools address gender-diverse policies to ensure the safety of all Nevada’s students?



Respect for all students is paramount. Respect needs to come from home, students, school staff and the community. We can have all the policies in the world but without empathy and understanding from everyone, policies are just words on paper. Support for equitable hiring of women, men and non-binary genders is important but quality of people is first priority.



Across Nevada, Spanish speaking parents struggle to receive assistance and attention in their children’s schools because many schools with high Latino student populations fail to provide bilingual front office staff readily available to assist parents. What is your position on passing legislation that would offer schools with significant Latino and ELL (English Language Learner) student populations funding to hire bilingual staff designated for parental engagement in the school’s administrative office?



State funding or not, we have the responsibility to meet the needs of our school populations. It would be great to have state funding but it is even more important for school districts and individual schools to make this a priority. As part of my administrative duties, I was director of ESL programs. I implemented SIOP training in my school district and was a strong advocate for changing how we teach and interact with English Language Learners. This is an area of great and growing need. Sure I support increased funding for ELL students and also increased advocacy for local school districts and schools to embrace the need.

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