Name: Laura DuPont
Occupation: Engineer Campaign website or social media site:
Elected offices held (with years of service): Hyde PTA President - 2012 - present, 2007-09
Hyde PTA Treasurer - 2009-11
Clear Falls Band Booster Club Treasurer - 2011-present
League City Intermediate Band Booster Club President - 2012-present
Westbrook Band Booster Club Vice President - 2010-11
Clear Creek Community Council of PTAs Treasurer - 2011-2012
Q: Are you a legal resident of the district you are seeking to represent?
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ADDRESS: 403 Crimson Coast Drive, League City, TX 77573
Q: Have you ever been charged or convicted of a felony crime? If you answer yes please explain.
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Q: Have you ever sued a public entity or been sued by one? If you answer yes, please explain.
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Q: Do you have any other debts (including unpaid taxes) to a public entity? If yes please explain.
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Q: Will you have your home phone number listed in the phone book or your mobile number listed for the public to contact you directly?
Q: Why should voters choose you?
A: My education, experience, and expertise are all directly aligned with what I hope to accomplish as a school board trustee. I have supported teachers, students and parents in learning for the last 11 years in numerous volunteer positions in CCISD. I have a track record of leading PTAs and booster clubs in alignment with district activities and goals. I have working relationships with administrators, teachers, parents, and students. I have a passion for improving processes to achieve excellence. I have solid knowledge of local education issues and current events affecting education in Texas, and want to be a part of the team maximizing CCISD's role in shaping and transforming education.
Q: What are your specific qualifications for the position?
A: My involvement in CCISD and education is distinguished over the last 11 years. I served as PTA President and Treasurer, as band booster President and Treasurer, and on many district committees. I organized math nights, curriculum nights, and other educational programs. Previously, as a faculty member at Penn State, as a quality engineering consultant, and as a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award Examiner, I worked with hundreds of teams - understanding processes, measuring performance, improving results, and benchmarking excellence. I have extensive knowledge and experience working with all types of organizations to understand and improve processes in order to achieve organizational effectiveness and consistent, outstanding results that exceed stakeholder's needs.
Q: What are the issues in this campaign?
A: The most discussed issue is probably the bond referendum, and this includes whether the candidate will be a good steward of public money.
Along the lines of funding, there are also questions around what to do about state funding of public schools.
A third issue would be the talk around state assessments and high-stakes testing.
Q: What is your platform on those issues?
A: I fully support the bond referendum, which will dramatically improve the learning environment in a variety of ways. The money taken from public education needs to be replaced. I agree with the goal of TAMSA, which is to encourage legislators to pursue an adequate and equitable solution to the funding system, while maintaining accountability and responsibility for educating the whole student.
I am in support of recent bills such as HB5 which strive to reduce the number of high-stakes, standardized exams. I support a focus on critical thinking, problem solving, and meaningful and effective assessments that allow for more productive classroom instruction and more efficient use of public funds.
Q: How many children do you have attending CCISD? How many have attended in the past? If your children do not attend CCISD are they home schooled or private school?
A: I have three boys and all three attend schools in CCISD - a sophomore at Clear Falls High School, a 6th grader at League City Intermediate, and a 3rd grader at Hyde Elementary.
Q: Do you favor the proposed bond referendum? Why or why not?
A: Rebuilds, improvements, student safety, repairs, growth, instructional technology, and co-curricular and extracurricular support - all very critical items that will impact learning in CCISD. The stadium, the most controversial piece, accounts for only an $8.28 increase in taxes for a median home the first YEAR, and a maximum median annual cost of $23.32. That's all to replace a stadium that was built in the 1950's when there was only 1 comprehensive high school. This stadium is currently scheduled constantly by 5 comprehensive high schools. Additional dollars in this bond item also support key co-curricular student activities in FFA and fine arts. Students in CCISD deserve the products of this bond.
Q: If you support the bond proposal, what assurances can you give that the money will be spent wisely? If you do not support the bond proposal, what alternative do you propose to meet the needs of the district?
A: CCISD has a track record of spending bond money as intended, and being good stewards of public funds. The projects included in this bond are the highest priority projects as determined by a team of community members, parents, and educators. Using bond money on these projects will furthermore free up funds in the Maintenance & Operations (M&O) budget, which can then be used as additional support for educational programs and teachers. Without the bond passing, critical improvement items will have to be funded through M&O, which is likely to result in a devastating impact on learning and teacher support.
Q: How would you rate the leadership of the CCISD administration?
A: I have great respect for the leadership in CCISD. It is through the excellent leadership and forward thinking of Paul McLarty and Dr. Greg Smith that CCISD survived the $17.5 million state cut in funding to the district in 2011 without laying off any teachers or staff, and while maintaining excellence in educational programs. CCISD remains in great shape compared to most other districts in the state relative to its financial situation. The district also is in the forefront of reform to high stakes testing and assessment through its involvement in the High Performance Schools Consortium.