Doug Sposito is one of four candidates running for a seat in Legislative District 30 House of Representatives. We asked him some questions on education policy.
Should the AIMS test remain a requirement for high-school graduation?
Not as a singular item. I think using the AIMS test as the only criteria by which we judge whether our kids are capable of entering society is not a good idea. The AIMS test should be one tool in a box of tools.
What additional “tools” do you suggest as a requirement for high school graduation?
The teachers need to be given more authority and the ability to assess students on an individual level. Somehow we need to create a system that will improve our graduation rates or actually put them into society as functional kids. When you link the AIMS test to funding, you get teachers who are simply teaching students to pass a test.
Do you support state-funded vouchers for private or religious schools?
I support the vouchers, right now, for kids with special needs. I also support an expanded school choice program that allows parents to put more competition in public schools.
Does the state need to spend more on school construction?
That is entirely relative. Right now with the population stabilizing and perhaps even declining, we probably do not need to spend more on school construction. However, as we have an increase of children, we obviously need to meet that demand too.
Should school construction funds come from the general fund of would you prefer a new revenue source for school construction?
Having a school’s Facility Board equalize the facilities throughout the state is a good idea.
Do you support borrowing money to pay for school construction?
In some circumstances, borrowing for school construction does make sense. Right now we’re broke as a state, but we still need to continue the construction we’ve committed to. Just like any properly functioning business going through down times, we have to in fact borrow money to get through these hard times. However, I feel that when the state is prospering we should not be borrowing money for anything.
Do you support merit pay for teachers?
How would you determine how merit pay was awarded?
We already have a career ladder program that I think should be expanded throughout the state. I would like to see individual teachers rewarded for outstanding service on an annual basis. I feel confident that the teachers, combined with the unions and the school boards can come up with a very effective method.
Do you support sex-ed programs that include information on abstinence, contraception, and HIV/STD prevention?
I support age appropriate sex education. I think there have been a number of cases where we have tried to apply that education to children who are too young. I further believe that part of sex education needs to be encouraging parents to have conversations with their children and have government infringing on our personal lives as little as possible.
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