Jeff Ford

Education and work experience: WHS class of 1983; West Texas State University; Weatherford College; UTA; Texas Tech University.

Self employed 1988-1999; Lumber sales rep 1999-2018.

Family: Married to Mitzi Ford for over 28 years; Jace Ford 22, WHS class of 2014; Jenna Ford 20, WHS class of 2016; Jared Ford 18, WHS class of 2018; Jancey Ford 14, projected WHS class of 2021

1. Why are you running and why do you think you are the best-qualified candidate?

I want to make a difference in our school system and promote students' success inside and outside of the classroom. I want to create more opportunities and choices for our kids when they graduate. I know with a strong education, confidence and motivation, our kids will succeed in everything they choose to conquer in the world. My father was a teacher in WISD, my wife is a teacher, I graduated from WISD, and all of my kids will graduate from WISD. I love this community and these people. Teachers are important to me, and I have a unique view of teachers needs and struggles in the classroom at WISD. I can bring a different approach and perspective to the WISD Board that is not present now.

2. The state is giving less money to school districts year after year, how will you adjust to that?

This topic is very frustrating to all school districts in Texas. Public schools are being asked to do more with less, but we must find ways to cut expenses and still give our kids the best education possible. Taxpayers tackle the same issues in their own family budgets. They cut back and adjust to their incomes. They make cuts and adjust their spending. Taxpayers expect the same response from our schools and governmental entities. I will work to make sure that we are spending every dollar of taxpayer money efficiently and effectively if I am elected to the WISD Board of Trustees.

3. What are your thoughts on state testing and the upcoming A-F accountability system?

We must have accountability and data to insure that our kids are learning. The problem with the A-F rating system is it only gives you a snapshot of one day in a child's learning. We cannot take one day or one test to grade and judge our kid's progress. Learning is so much more than just one snap shot in one day. We must take into account all variables of each child. Our focus should be on each child, how they learn and what is the best way for them to succeed in learning. That is not done by one standardized test.

4. What improvement will you bring to the ISD, what’s being done right, and what could be done better?

I will bring the view of a student, the view of family of teachers, the view of a parent and the view of a conservative business professional. I will promote more transparency from our school district to our community. I think we need to engage our community and embrace them as valued partners. An involved and valued community creates a school district that succeeds at higher levels. WISD is growing and we have done great things like the Collegiate Academy and the new Career and Technology center. We must continue to provide our students with more opportunities to be successful in the classroom and in the world.

5. What are your thoughts regarding increased security measures in ISDs and mental help for students?

This is the hot topic of the day. I attended both town hall meetings and have done some research on my own. I do like the defender program, but have concerns that the aftermath of any shooting may be more than anyone can even imagine. I would like to work with the city to try and increase the number of SROs in the district. This seems like the price tag may be more than we can handle as a district. Prevention is the key. We must learn to recognize the signs of a troubled child and do our best to get them the help they need. Most of the time they just need someone to love them. Love them enough to set boundaries. Love them enough to hold them accountable. Love them enough to spend time with them, but understand that discipline must still exist. We must have additional counselors on staff that work with our kids who are showing signs of troubles and understand how to intervene before this type of violence can happen.

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