A retired teacher, former teachers union president, precinct committeeperson and community activist, Carlos Tolliver, recently filed his candidacy for a seat on the 1st District Gary School Board at the Crown Point Election Board in Crown Point, IN.
Tolliver is among 96 candidates that are running for the 46 school board seats in Lake County. In Gary’s 1st District there are five other candidates, however, with 45 years of service, Tolliver is a veteran when it comes to dedication to Gary youth.
Tolliver says.” We have a tradition of great public schools in Gary. However, the Gary Public School System is presently a District in serious fiscal and student academic crisis.” Citing a 90-million-dollar school deficit and upcoming referendum that would increase taxpayer debt obligations to $142 million.
Tolliver stated “We need School Board members that are qualified, experienced, forward-thinking, creative, a history of service and above all, passionate about educating our kids and protecting the taxpayer dollar. We need members who will ask the tough questions, and demand fiscal transparency and accountability. We must stop the excessive, questionable spending that diverts crucial tax dollars from children to special interests, at increased costs to the taxpayer.”
Tolliver further states, “The Gary School District has received a grade of F for the past four years. Schools in the 1st District are al-arming evidence of the citywide decline in student academic performance. First District schools have experienced an average of 20-30 percent decline in student performance over the past three years. This decline in student test scores has been accompanied by a critical drop in student enrollment and loss of tax dollar revenue. The poor school and student academic performance has a negative impact on Gary and the 1st Districts economy and housing market.”
“I promise to listen respectfully, work collaboratively, and always keep the focus on what is most important: providing every child in our schools with every opportunity to excel and protecting the citizens tax dollar.”
Tolliver offers some of his vision and goals for Gary and 1st District schools;
- All 1st District Schools achieve 4 or 5 Star School Classification
- Transparency and accountability with district fiscal spending
- A coherent academic plan for 1st District Schools that is data-based, with goals for annual student and school growth, and administrator/principal accountability for those goals
- A STEM plan that includes Advanced Placement and High Ability Course Curriculum with science career pathways from 6th through 12th grade
- An enhanced performing arts program
- Insure that tax dollars designated for students are spent for that purpose
- Improved athletic programs for students
- A resolution to the old Emerson and Nobel School issues
- Efficient Transportation: Families need to be able to choose how to get their children to school safely and efficiently, at the least cost to the taxpayer
“I seek the privilege to be that voice for children and taxpayers, insuring that education tax dollars are spent wisely and openly; that our students excel in the classroom and life. Because when children and schools succeed, we all benefit.”