I’m writing to share my enthusiastic support for Kelly Kent for Culver City School Board. We are fortunate to have a candidate that has showed the love and commitment to the education of Lin Howe students and our community.
I am both a parent and a Spanish teacher at Lin Howe; I’m part of the Spanish enrichment program that Kelly co-founded with Joanna Brody and other parents. This Spanish Language Program has been a success since day one. The thought that perhaps Lin Howe would never have the privilege of a second language like the other two immersion schools in our district was a constant topic of discussion among some fellow parents. And because of Kelly’s dedication, support and her talent to communicate with different cultures, this program became a reality.
In addition to knowing that learning more than one language boosts a child’s brainpower, Kelly is also a strong supporter of arts education for its ability to close the achievement gap. Research has shown that the arts prepare students for success in school, work and life by boosting math and literacy achievement, developing creativity and critical thinking skills, strengthening perseverance, and facilitating cross-cultural understanding.
Thankfully, CCUSD’s current LCAP (Local Control Access Plan) does allocate for increased arts spending in the next 3-year period. However, teacher training is not included in this projection. If Kelly is elected to the school board, she will advocate for the district to increase its support of arts via a significant teacher-training component, where teachers learn how to incorporate the arts in ways that specifically support the needs of socioeconomically disadvantaged students and English language learners, populations that are currently suffering from a lower graduation rate. This is the most efficient and effective way to integrate arts into the curriculum via subjects that are already being taught (reading, math, science, etc.), and to ensure that every student receives an arts-based education, which ultimately improves student outcomes.
For more information on Kelly’s view about arts and education, I encourage voters to read her response to the recent ArtsForLA survey, which all of our CCUSD school board candidates filled out [ see culvercitycrossroads.com/2015/10/22/school-board-candidates-respond-to-art-survey/]
“It takes a village to raise a child,” and our schools and community are a huge part of our children’s lives. Kelly has been working hard to gather input from parents, teachers, students, district representatives and other citizens about what they think is working, and what is broken, in our schools. I support her vision to increase access to both foreign languages and the arts, and to enhance professional training that will enable our teachers to reach all students – no one child is alike, and each responds to different things in the classroom. Kelly Kent knows this, not only in her heart, but also from a brain-based scientific point of view. She will make an outstanding advocate for all of our children.
For all of these reasons, I hope you’ll join me in giving Kelly your vote for school board representation on Election Day, November 3rd.