28 Apr Jeff Durham
Elko County School Board District 6
Campaign Contact Phone: 4358509970
Please share briefly what inspired you to run for this office and why you feel you’re qualified for the position.
I was watching a City Council meeting in West Wendover when one of the council appealed to the community for someone to step up and apply to the vacant school board position so that we would have a local representative. I am in a good position now to give back so I applied and was appointed. I am a restaurant owner/operator and am very active in my community through service, donations and fundraisers for local students and programs. My business experience is a valuable addition to the board as well as my integrity and hard work in everything I do.
How do you propose that more funding be allocated to public education?
We need to work closely with the state to try and increase our per pupil spending to at least the national average of around 15k per student. Right now Nevada spends roughly 11k per student per year, far below the national level. Making sure that money is spent efficiently is another priority, If we cant get to the national average we can at least make sure that we are spending what we do have wisely and in our students best interests.
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?
When I was first appointed I was shocked to learn how poorly both state and national performance is regarding literacy in children. Less than half of kids 3rd thru 8th grade meet the state standard for proficiency in reading. We need to get parents involved more and we need to get these numbers up. Kids are getting left behind! I believe if we focus on this we can change the expected outcome for many students.
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?
I dont have any suggestions at this time, waiting to see how the next budget goes before I can comment.
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?
Current ECSD policy is designed so that every student has a safe environment to learn in. I would continue to evaluate policy as needed and will hold accountable anyone necessary to ensure that policy is followed while listening to staff and community for any needs that may arise.
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 believe that we should follow the standards set by the state department of education in regards to this.
Do you support ending the use of pepper spray on students by the school district police? Yes or No, and why?
I support using the minimum necessary level of force to ensure the safety of students and bystanders. I believe that our SRO's should be well trained and equipped. I would support whatever their department policy is regarding which tools they have at their disposal. I believe in our officers and trust their judgement, as no situation is the same as the next. I will also do my part to hold them accountable if necessary.
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?
This is something I mentioned earlier, we need to get the community involved.
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 believe that anything sexual should be discussed with elementary school children. I also believe everyone goes to the bathroom, I don't really care where they go as long as it isn't disruptive or inappropriate.
What is your position on restorative justice?
I believe in holding people accountable.