Candidates vying for a spot on the Killeen Independent School District Board of Trustees discussed their platforms and answered questions from residents during a political forum Monday at the Lions Club Senior Center in Killeen.
The forum was sponsored by the Killeen branch NAACP and the League of United Latin American Citizens Council 4535.
Four candidates — Lan Carter, Brockley Moore, Aya Eneli and Marvin Rainwater — are running for the Place 4 seat.
Carter said her parents instilled in her the importance of acceptance and the power of education.
“I value education,” Carter said. “I am passionate for education for all of our students.”
Carter, who taught in
Copperas Cove ISD for three years, said she knows the inner-workings of school districts.
“Teachers do a lot of work that we don’t give them credit for,” Carter said. “If our teachers aren’t happy, our students aren’t happy. We need to be more proactive on the school board.”
In response to a resident’s question, Carter said if she could change one thing about the district, she would alleviate unnecessary duties that cut into the teacher’s time in order to let the teacher “get inspired” and allow that positive energy to funnel down to his or her students.
Retired Staff Sgt. Brockley Moore said it’s important to get parents involved in the educational process.
He also said it’s important for the board to represent a mixture of the community in terms of having educators and business leaders on the board.
However, in response to a resident’s question about the school board reflecting the racial makeup of the community, Moore said diversity was an overused word.
“I didn’t have a black teacher until I was in the ninth grade. Race has nothing to do with teaching a child,” Moore said. “When you vote for someone, don’t vote for Brockley because he is black. Don’t vote for Brockley because he’s a veteran. Vote because he’s going to get out there and bust his butt for your kids.”
Eneli said something that’s been lacking in previous political forums for this election is discussion about the future of Killeen ISD students.
Eneli, who will have five children attending Killeen ISD schools in the 2014-2015 school year, said the board “certainly (does) not need another retired educator on the board.”
“I hear a lot of talk about budgets and the day-to-day challenges that we face,” she said.
“What I’m not hearing is: What is our vision for your youth?”
Eneli said it’s important for children to be excited about school.
“Our school district is a good one, but to do really great, we have to get kids and parents excited about school,” she said. “If we are graduating students who can’t read, who can’t write, who can’t communicate, that’s a problem.”
Marvin Rainwater, who retired after 43 years with Killeen ISD, said the most important thing for the district is the children. In order to serve the child, Rainwater said the board has to serve classroom teachers.
“If you have a personal relationship with a child, that’s an intrinsic motivator to help that student learn,” Rainwater said. “I want to free up classroom teachers’ time to allow them to be able to do (that). ... The most important thing in the Killeen ISD is the child.”
Terry Delano, 54, Killeen ISD school board vice president, is running unopposed for the Place 5 seat he currently holds. He said he tries to make the best decisions possible for the district as a whole.
“I’ve tried to be a good listener, tried to be well-balanced and look after the needs of (not only) the teachers and students, but also the taxpayers,” Delano said.