Weatherford Democrat

April 18, 2013

Q&A: Springtown ISD, Place 1

Meet the two candidates seeking the Place 1 seat on the Springtown ISD school board


Weatherford Democrat

— Incumbent Place 1 Springtown ISD Trustee Mike Ray faces challenger Rusty Brawner in the May 11 elections seeking a three-year term on SISD board. The Democrat asked candidates in local contested city council and school district races to answer questions, limiting their answers to 300 words per question with a deadline to submit their responses. Early voting begins April 29.

Name: Mike Ray

Age: 43

Occupation: operations manager for Stallion Oilfield Services.

Family: wife, Judy (lifelong resident and graduate of SHS); son, Dylan Ray, junior at SHS; daughter, Jill Ray, freshman at SHS.



Why are you running for school board?

I wanted to give something back to the community where I grew up and where I am raising my children. This is a great way to be involved with all the kids growth and education.

 

Any prior experience running for office?

I have served on the Springtown board for three years.



Are there any changes you’d like to see implemented if you serve?

I believe we have already seen some positive changes. The move from 4A to 3A has had a positive affect athletically and academically. Our students and teachers work hard whether it is athletics, Fine Arts or academically.

There is always room for improvement and ways to get better. It can be in the classroom, band hall or on the field. The playing field for UIL events may be more level but we have to continue to find ways to prepare our kids for life after high school, whether that be attending college or pursuing a vocation.

The biggest hurdle we face as a district is the budget cuts that have effected all schools. Our teachers have to do more with less money. Springtown ISD had to cut $1.6 million from our budget two years ago. That money wasn’t replaced last year, so over the last two years we’ve received over $3 million less than we would have received under previous funding formulas. Campus budgets have been reduced for two straight years along with absorbing positions when possible.

Our administration has done a great job of watching where our money is being spent and that is why our district is in a good position to work through this difficult time. There are encouraging things coming out of Austin. The House of Representatives seems to recognize that recent funding cuts that totaled over $5 billion need to be restored for education, it looks like $2.5 billion might be returned. The Senate numbers are lower than those from the House. Right now, they are ready to restore around $1 billion. This is not enough but it is heading in the right direction.

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Name: Rusty Brawner

Age: 38

Occupation: welding shop/semi-retired

Family: wife, Beckie Brawner; daughter, Alyssa Brawner.

 

Why are you running for school board?

I want more involved with my community and my daughter’s education.  I also feel that I would be an asset to the community and Springtown’s school district.

 

Any prior experience running for office?

No.



Are there changes you’d like to see implemented if you serve?

As a school board member I would support the betterment of our district, by working with our administration and teachers. One area of improvement I would like to see is an increase in our test scores. I also feel that all board members need to make it to as many school functions as possible and be accessible to the community.

I believe that improvements and changes are always the goal of the district, its board members, and the community as a whole.