28 Apr Adam Mayberry
Washoe School Board Trustee District F
Campaign Contact Phone: 775.843.1957
Facebook: Adam Mayberry - Washoe County School Board Trustee
Please share briefly what inspired you to run for this office and why you feel you’re qualified for the position.
I am a product of a public education in Nevada. I am also a single dad to two children. I raise them by myself, and I understand the concerns, anxieties, and the fears of moms and dads, guardians, families and our students throughout our School District. I also witness the difficulties our students face, the intense pressure from today’s society, and their concerns of an uncertain future. I want to be part of lifting up our students by accentuating the hopes and dreams they can achieve, despite the barriers. I am voice of reason during these divisive times and want to contribute to unifying our communities.
As a person who had to struggle with hearing and speech and overcome the adversity to a disability, I know the importance of a compassionate public organization dedicated to providing a quality education that will prepare all our children of all ethnicities and genders, for their future.
Our schools are at the heart learning. They are however, far more than education institutions. Our schools provide the social and emotional support for our students. Many of our children depend on meals, after school programs, adult mentors, and social interaction to be successful in and out of the school building. Our students with special needs rely on our public schools to progress and gain the skills they need to get caught up. I believe in a path toward graduation that is equitable for all students. There is no problem that cannot be solved with education.
In November 2021, I had the honor to be appointed by a unanimous vote on the Board of Trustees for the at-large District F. I do my homework, have toured nearly 25 schools, and have worked collaboratively with my colleagues to help move us forward, despite challenging times.
How do you propose that more funding be allocated to public education?
Nearly 98.5 percent of the Washoe County School District (WCSD) revenue is derived from the state, preventing the District from having any control over its fiscal destiny. The WCSD must work collaboratively with state legislators to raise the base on per pupil funding, which will only increase one percent for WCSD next year, despite state revenues projected to be up by 34 percent. The increase of one percent is based on the Nevada cost of education index and the small school adjustment index that disenfranchises Washoe County students. Because of these adjustments, WCSD has the lowest per pupil funding for the state. We must methodically educate our legislators and raise awareness of the disparities and fix the formulas. Additionally, we should explore other revenue sources that don’t burden the working families in Washoe County.
Parents are frustrated with the performance of public schools, its apparent nonresponsiveness to the community, and its current poor performance with student outcomes. What are your thoughts on how we can support public education and change this situation?
As a working, single parent, I know firsthand the daily challenges our children face in our schools. My commitment to our parents and families will always be to adopt policies that improve academic performance for all our public-school students, and to listen to the challenges faced by our teachers, along with the needs of our students from their parents. We spend too much time on issues that don’t necessarily address how to move the needle in the right direction and need to be laser focused on giving our children the best education and social and emotion learning support possible.
How would you propose changing the current funding formula to make it more equitable for children from poverty, English Language Learners and special education students?
Our most vulnerable populations require more state funding for education. The state did not fund these categories sufficiently based on their own studies and compared to the funding that other states directed toward these disadvantage populations. Again, the state legislature dictates education funding, not the local school districts. We must work in partnership with our state delegation, community and business leaders, and school district colleagues to increase the education pie, not shrink it. State general funds for education have decreased from 40 percent to 33 percent. It is my hope that we can make the next legislative session truly the “education” session.
There is a rise of bullying and racism in our schools. If elected, what steps would you make to ensure that our children can safely attend school?
Our schools must be welcoming and safe for all our students. I strongly support strong anti-bullying policies to include cyber-bullying and any form or harassment directed toward any member of our student population of all ethnicities, genders, and disabilities. Students should never be fearful or uncomfortable when it comes to attending school and learning. WCSD currently has strong anti-bullying/harassment polices in place, and I will always be an advocate to ensure they are enforced. Furthermore, I will ensure any complaint I become aware is followed through and resolved.
Comprehensive, age and developmentally appropriate, medically-accurate, inclusive sex education has been proven to improve students’ long-term health outcomes, yet it is not required that students be provided with this information in their sex-ed programs. Do you believe that public school sex-ed programs should be comprehensive, medically accurate, and inclusive?
I support the opportunity for our students to participate in sex education that is age-appropriate, accurate and inclusive. In fact, my own children have had the sex education curriculum taught to them. I do, however, support the right for parents to decide if they want their children to participate in the public-school district’s sex ed program.
Do you support ending the use of pepper spray on students by the school district police? Yes or No, and why?
Our school police are unique in that their effectiveness comes from building trust and relationships with our students. It is these qualities in our officers that serve our students and staff well, along with community policing that help diffuse situations that could escalate.
Only in extreme circumstances, such as when their lives or the lives of others are in danger, should they use the tools they are equipped with to subdue a student. At Washoe County Schools, the use of pepper spray is extraordinary rare. Furthermore, school police officers go through extensive training on the use of pepper spray. Once the pepper spray is discharged, officers are required for call for medical treatment. The use of pepper spray reduces the need for an officer to use physical force since there is a predictability in how the subject will behave.
Post Covid we have many students who have not been able to catch up in their learning. It is particularly alarming that the younger students, who did not acquire reading skills during remote learning, are very far behind in reading proficiency. At the other end, we have seen a drop in Nevada’s high school graduation rates, with minorities, special ed, and ELLs now suffering a significant graduation gap. How do we address the needs of the Covid generation?
There has undoubtedly been lost learning from the pandemic across all age and grade levels. Our minority population to include English Language Learners and special ed students have been impacted greatly. It is critical to do all we can to provide extra help and support to our students such as access to tutors, increased access to the right technology that meets individual student needs. Not all students learn at the same pace, and we should focus on more individualized learning. Additionally, the retainment and hiring of more graduation advocates can help mentor and assist those students who need added support.
What is your position on legislation such as Don’t Say Gay, and forcing transgender children to use bathrooms of their birth sex?
I don’t support legislation that is aligned with Don’t Say Gay. Gender neutral restrooms in our newer schools have been accepted and are working well. We must always ensure our schools are safe places for all our children of all ethnicities and genders.
What is your position on restorative justice?
Restorative justice sounds and looks nice on paper, but the reality is that the NV Legislature has never provided the proper resources for training or support. Unfortunately, poor behavior is increasing in our schools, particularly as we recover from pandemic. I recognize that each student’s situation is different, and in most cases, counsel and student support is the remedy.
However, we must not allow students who engage in acts of violence to continue disruptive and threatening behavior in our schools, and interrupt student learning and in some cases creating fear in our students. Our schools must be welcoming and safe. There needs to be consequences for violent behavior to include suspension. Violence against other students and staff cannot be tolerated.