New Fall Regional format reveals members’ support for revenue reform
Friday, September 21, 2018
Forest Grove School Board member Fred Marble (left), Forest Grove Superintendent David Parker and Sherwood Superintendent Heather Cordie participate in real-time polling of OSBA members at the Thursday Fall Regional meeting in Hillsboro. (Photo by Jake Arnold, OSBA)
OSBA should focus on revenue reform and press the Legislature to fund to the Quality Education Model, school board members and administrators told OSBA staff at the Fall Regional meeting Thursday in Hillsboro.
OSBA Legislative Services Director Lori Sattenspiel has added real-time polling to this year’s Fall Regional meetings. Members answer multiple-choice questions about education funding and OSBA’s work using handheld devices, and their answers are displayed on an overhead screen for discussion.
Responses showed strong support for revenue reform, including more education spending and cost containment.
“It was interesting to see where I was in agreement with the group and in disagreement,” said Hillsboro School Board member Mark Watson.
OSBA staff travel the state during Fall Regionals to update members on OSBA’s work and gather their input for the year to come. More than two dozen board members and administrators from nine area districts gathered Thursday, sharing ideas and asking questions.
Money for schools was the underlying theme of much of the meeting. Sattenspiel and Legislative Services Specialist Richard Donovan briefed members on expected school policy bills and revenue fights in the upcoming session.
Scappoose Superintendent Paul Peterson said he really liked the meeting’s crisp and concise format and the detailed poll questions. OSBA is planning to do statewide polling with similar questions, and Peterson said he was eager to see how the results compared with board members’ answers.
Sherwood Superintendent Heather Cordie said she was happy to hear that OSBA is trying to shift the State School Fund conversation away from just maintaining the current service level. She said Oregon should be reaching to improve public education.
OSBA is investing $1.5 million this fiscal year in a revenue reform, cost-containment and accountability campaign. Sattenspiel introduced Jake Weigler, OSBA’s revenue reform campaign “quarterback.” The Hilltop Public Solutions consultant will help manage the specialized legislative advocacy that OSBA plans for the 2019 legislative session.
“We are working to build an outside-the-building effort to support advocacy for adequate funding of Oregon students’ education,” he said.
OSBA’s campaign includes enlisting school board members to advocate for revenue reform.