The filing period kicked off on January 30 for hopefuls seeking a place on the May 11 Municipal Election ballot and three candidates have already announced their intention to run for a seat on the Lewisville Independent School Board.
Paige Shoven, a 13 year resident of Lewisville, has filed to run in Place 3, a seat left vacant after Jeff Knapp relocated outside the district last year.
Shoven ran unsuccessfully for Place 1 on the school board last May.
"I learned so much while campaigning last year, it was a great experience," said Shoven. "My love for the children of LISD did not stop when the election votes came in."
Over the past year, Shoven said that she has stayed involved by attending every school board meeting, participating in the INSIDE LISD program, serving on the district facilities committee, volunteering with the LISD Council of PTAs, and both local chapters of PTA as well as staying active in church.
Shoven said that some of the issues facing the district are rezoning of the Flower Mound High School feeder schools, supporting educators while they implement Strategic Design (a communitywide initiative to change the way children learn), completion of the 2008 bond projects including finalizing the Flower Mound High School and Marcus High School 9th grade centers, rebuilding two schools in The Colony feeder pattern, and ensuring the buildings are capable of supporting the technology their students are using on a daily basis.
"Partner these with the growing concerns from Austin this legislative session over the amount of funding our schools will receive in the future, STAAR/EOC testing requirements, as well as the talk of vouchers and how it will affect our public school system, it will be a busy year for all school boards and LISD promises to be no different."
Shoven and her husband of 12 years, Rick, have two daughters, Elizabeth 11 and Kara 8, in the LISD school system.
"LISD is a great district we should all be proud of, if elected I would be honored to represent one of the best districts in the state," said Shoven.
Flower Mound resident Kris Vaughn filed to run for the Place 4 seat, which will be vacated by Julie Foughty who recently announced that she will not run again.
Vaughn said her commitment to LISD is surrounded by 10 years as a parent volunteer and leader in the district through the PTA, Communities in Schools of North Texas, and district committees.
“I want to support LISD as the Strategic Design implementation continues, and we focus on our vision for each student to enjoy a thriving, productive life in a future they create,” said Vaughn, who serves on the 26 member Strategic Design Team that was formed in October 2011 and helped create a new vision and mission for LISD.
“As a parent of two LISD students, I have a vested interest in the district building strong relationships with community members, and I am eager to help make this happen.”
Most recently, Vaughn helped co-found the advocacy group Speak Up for Texas Public Schools, which was organized to raise awareness about the challenges and threats facing public schools, most notably the over-reliance on standardized testing.
Vaughn is currently President of the Flower Mound High School PTSA and was a member of the inaugural group for the Inside LISD Community Leadership Program. She also has served on the Academic Calendar Committee and Curriculum Council. Vaughn has leadership experience at all levels of PTA including National PTA committee member and Texas PTA board of director.
Vaughn and her husband Trent have lived within LISD for 13 years. She has a son and daughter at Flower Mound High School. Vaughn is a graduate of Central College in Pella, Iowa, where she received a degree in Business Management.
Over in Place 5, Trustee Brenda Latham is seeking a second term.
“This board has proven we can work together to bring resolution to the critical issues which impact our teachers’ ability to do their job, and our students’ ability to perform at their maximum, while also respecting the costs apportioned to the community," said Latham.
During her first term with LISD, Latham points to changes that have taken place such as hiring a new superintendent, balancing the 2010-2011 budget without a tax increase or affecting the district’s reserve funds, reorganization of Central Administration resulting in headcount reduction and increase in efficiency, increasing teacher pay by 3% and implementing a new pay structure for all LISD employees, and efforts to improve communication and increase transparency.
"With the ever increasing taxes from federal, state and local entities I understand the importance of appreciating what taxpayers of LISD have provided, and I am committed to maximizing the benefit received from each dollar,” said Latham.
Latham said she looks forward to continuing her policy of being receptive to campus invitations, engaging the administration for input on resolutions regarding policy matters before the board, and reaching out to the community for their vital input.
"We can do a better job on teacher pay in LISD and we are working to improve this area, showing full faith in our teachers. Our ongoing efficiency study will enable us to further streamline and remove budget items that are costly. This will move us closer to the goal of excellence," said Latham.
"The changes which have taken place over the last three years are monumental but most historical events involved monumental tasks accomplished by ordinary people who were determined to make a difference and I am determined to make a difference for LISD.”
The filing period for candidates runs through March 1. The last day to register to vote in the May election is April 11. Early in-person voting will be April 29–May 7.