Mountain View High School parent Fiona Walter recently declared her intent to run for one of three seats in the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District Board of Trustees race in November.
Walter is no stranger to leadership – she recently served as Mountain View High’s PTSA president and previously served eight years on the Mountain View Whisman School District Board of Trustees.
Walter, a Mountain View resident for 20 years, has dedicated the past 12 years to education, through volunteering as a parent on various district committees, helping coordinate parcel-tax campaigns, participating with PTAs at her children’s schools and serving on the Mountain View Whisman board.
Walter said she is running for the school board because she would like to see more parent representation. Currently only one parent of a high school student – Joe Mitchner – serves on the board.
“Having a parent on the board is an invaluable tool and connection to the community,” Walter noted. “I would like to see better communication to the parents and the community about things that directly affect them. I think having a second parent on the board would help that process as well.”
Walter said she would bring a wealth of experience to the board, and there would be no learning curve for her because of her previous experience with the California School Boards Association.
“I know the ins and outs of what a board looks like and does on an annual basis,” she said. “Add that experience with the parent aspect and I think I’d make a great board member.”
Walter listed some of the important matters the district faces: rolling out the Common Core curriculum, consolidating the various grading systems at Mountain View High, closing the achievement gap and ensuring that class standards align from teacher to teacher.
Walter promoted more parent engagement and involvement in the district’s board actions.
“I’d like to see the board setting strategies in engaging parents in big decisions that affect them – like the laptop rollout,” she said. “I’d like to see communication to the parents about what is happening at the board level.”
Walter added that the district is very strong in sharing press releases touting district achievements. She suggested that district officials could use the same avenue to communicate what is happening at the board level. She said that for a few years while she served on the Mountain View Whisman board, the district issued a board newsletter for parents.
The high school district board race appears to be contested this year. The seats of Trustees Judy Hannemann, Debbie Torok and Mitchner are up for grabs in the November election. To date, Torok and Mitchner have announced their intent to run for re-election, and Hannemann, who has served on the board for more than 20 years, has pulled papers, indicating another run.
The deadline for candidates to file paperwork for the November election is Friday.