April 13, 2010

Meet the Candidate: Mark Akinosho

In the upcoming election, Lee County residents will have the opportunity to fill three contested seats. Seven candidates are currently vying for those seats -- two incumbents and four challengers.

In this seven-part series, we've asked the candidates specific questions about the too-often-overlooked segment of our population: elementary schools. Have a follow-up question? Leave it in the comments and we'll get it answered!
Candidate: Mark Akinosho, contender

Question: Many parents were upset earlier this year when the district chose to use Saturday make-up days rather than the ones built into the calendar. What is your stance on adhering to the calendar? How would you correct or improve upon LCS’ calendar policy?

The school calendar is developed by Board of Education and Committee beforehand, and as good as their intentions was it is also subject to natural and environmental phenomenon, which can alter everything even the make-up days.  I was not so happy with Saturday school myself, but one of the rules I learned as a parent is flexibility when it comes to our children.  I will encourage our parents, that we should all have understanding and trust the Superintendent, to follow the calendar and make judgment calls whenever it is necessary.

Question: Many parents of elementary-age students are choosing alternative education options, such as the local Montessori school and homeschooling. Would you encourage a partnership (curriculum sharing, workshops, etc) between the public schools and these families? Would you support a public Montessori option?

I believe in having a wide range of choices concerning our children’s education.  This will enrich our community.  Families have to make the best decisions for their children in all circumstances.  I will support Montessori schools if the state approves one and I will encourage partnership between the public schools system.

Question: In an era when there are more communication options than ever before, many parents still complain about feeling cut off from their children’s teachers and school administrators. How would you resolve communication gaps? Would you encourage better and more reliable use of technology (email, websites, etc) as part of the solution?

I will encourage teachers and administrators to make available to parents all the websites, Alert Now, e-mail, podcast, phone numbers, etc.  I will urge parents to be more involved in their children’s education.

Question: Programs like STEM have been highly effective in the upper grades. What innovations would you spearhead or support for use in the lower grades?

I would support all programs that will improve and challenge our student to succeed in the 21st century and also advocate teaching of foreign languages at lower grades.

Question: Many candidates all across the country are turning to social media to connect with voters and constituents. Are you currently using any social media (such as Twitter, Facebook, or blogging) and if so, would you provide the link to your site(s) so that we can share those with our readers?

I believe in the use of social media to connect to friends and families, but currently I am not using any social networking tools for the campaign.

Come back tomorrow to see how other candidates responded to these questions. You can view previous candidate's responses here:


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