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Gresham-Barlow School District Zone 1 Position 1

Special districts in Oregon are formed to govern specific resources. Examples are people’s utility districts, library districts, sewer districts, irrigation districts, ports and cemetery districts. Some districts get revenue only from taxes. Others, such as water districts, get revenue from ratepayers. Others may combine the two sources. Each district is governed by a board of directors which is responsible for the operation of the district and its financial accountability. ( https://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/198.010 ) Qualifications: Candidate must be a registered voter and a resident of the district for 1 year. Employees of the district are not eligible unless employed as a substitute driver. ORS 332.016 and 332.018(2)Salary: A member of the governing body of a district may receive an amount not to exceed $50 for each day or portion thereof as compensation for services performed as a member of the governing body. Such compensation shall not be deemed lucrative. The governing body may provide for reimbursement of a member for actual and reasonable traveling and other expenses necessarily incurred by a member in performing official duties. [1971 c.403 §2; 1983 c.327 §2; 1983 c.740 §53a; 1989 c.517 §1; 1995 c.79 §74] In event of Vacancy: Except as otherwise provided by law, a vacancy in an elected office in the membership of the governing body of a district shall be filled by appointment by a majority of the remaining members of the governing body. If a majority of the membership of the governing body is vacant or if a majority cannot agree, the vacancies shall be filled promptly by the county court of the county in which the administrative office of the district is located. [ORS 198.320]

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  • Holly Riegelmann
    (N)

  • Candidate picture

    Robyn Stowers
    (N)

Biographical Information

Even before COVID and the transition to online learning, school districts struggled with disparities in academic achievement. Educators fear even greater gaps upon their return to classrooms. What strategies will you consider to address these increased disparities?

COVID has shown us the importance of family support in facilitating students’ education. How will you build on this understanding to increase the role of parents in decision making and promote parental involvement in schools?

What is the impact of the pandemic on school budgets and spending priorities? How do you propose meeting these new challenges?

Los distritos escolares ya tenían dificultades con las disparidades en el desempeño académico, inclusive antes del COVID y de la transición al aprendizaje por internet. Los educadores temen que aparezcan vacíos aún mayores cuando el estudiantado vuelva a los salones de clase. ¿Qué estrategias considerará usted para enfrentar el aumento de estas dificultades?

El COVID nos ha mostrado la importancia del apoyo de las familias para facilitar la educación de los estudiantes. ¿Cómo utilizará este hecho para ampliar la función de los padres en la toma de decisiones y promover la participación de los padres de familia en las escuelas?

¿Cuál es el impacto de la pandemia en los presupuestos escolares y en las prioridades de gasto? ¿Qué propone usted para enfrentar estos nuevos desafíos?

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Town Where You Live Gresham
Your Experience/Qualificatons Eleven years of professional experience in municipal, county, and Metro government. Ten months experience on Gresham-Barlow School Board.
County Multnomah
Term two-years
Students will only feel at a deficit if adults make them feel like this. The Gresham-Barlow School District data demonstrates that students are only a few points behind their peers from two years ago. Although this is a significant loss, it also indicates that students are learning. Tests also do not show other skills that students gained through distance learning, such as technology and self-regulation.

To close achievement gaps students must be culturally represented and supported by our systems. We need to create supportive environments that respect all identities. I support these cultural shifts through the creation of cultural resolutions, updating the academic calendar to reflect diverse populations and the expansion of ethnic studies and tribal history.

In addition to increased cultural supports, I propose increasing summer school, after-school and mentorship opportunities.
Parents must be engaged in all decision-making. The existing culture of the school board does not meaningfully engage or interact with the community. This needs to change.

GBSD can eliminate barriers to participation and increase transparency and engagement by publishing complete agendas packets one week in advance to fully inform the public and board members on upcoming topics; providing opportunities for the community, students and staff to engage with the board through listening sessions, community events, and board meetings; and increase accessibility by including closed captioning, hearing support devices, and translation services at all school events.
The COVID-19 pandemic has left students traumatized. For over a year, COVID-19 prevented students from seeing their friends and family, prevented participation in sports and other important activities, and even caused the death of loved ones. Therefore, I believe the most essential service we can provide our students is increased mental health supports.

I especially advocate for a Student Health Center in our district. Student Health Centers offer comprehensive primary and mental health care services to all Multnomah County youth ages 5-18. There are no out-of-pocket costs.

In addition to a health center, I propose each middle and high school have a full-time mental health specialist on campus to provide ongoing and emergency mental health support

I also propose reallocating the $200,000 paid annually to the Gresham Police Department to fund these additional health services.
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