Anne Lowe: Brings new perspective, grounded in principles |

Anne Lowe: Brings new perspective, grounded in principles

I am Anne Lowe, and I’m asking for your vote for the Steamboat Springs School Board. I’ll bring a new perspective to the board, grounded in the following principles.

■ Students first — I currently work at Yampa Valley Medical Center as a clinical pharmacist. In health care, our foremost priority is optimizing outcomes for every individual patient. This should be the same priority for each student. If we can set this as a goal in healthcare, we can certainly do the same in the educational system. Imagine an IEP (individual education plan) for every student so they can achieve their optimal outcome. With new ideas and emerging technologies, this can be an achievable goal.

■ Fiscal responsibility — It is easy to claim fiscally responsibility but difficult to stand firm. Often, we see candidates assure us they are fiscally accountable, then pander to interest groups or dismiss reality. In the Pilot’s election forum, each candidate was asked two questions that highlight my point.

We were first asked to discuss innovations we would like to pursue for our school system. Two of the candidates turned this question into what they would do if they had “unlimited funds.” I responded that I would take a different angle, since we’d just been discussing financial restraints. It seemed pointless to discuss anything other than pursuing innovation to maximize our actual resources.

The next question asked whether or not we support the school district’s entry into the preschool business. Here, we are facing a major bond issue, 3A and 3B, to invest in a major way in new bricks and mortar and to address long standing deferred maintenance. While the difference between operating expenses and capital needs is apparent, the source of the funds is the same — our taxes.

This is an example of what faces our community and will continue to as time goes on. We need someone who will have the courage to stand on principle and consistently make the difficult decisions dealing with the reality we face. At the same time, we need creative solutions to be brought to the table. I will strive to do both for our community, if elected.

■ Collaborate to leverage school resources — An example of this rests again with the preschool question. Should we compete with previously established preschools in our community and take on another financial burden rather than collaborate with them to enhance their benefit to our community? This is an inefficient use of funds. Instead, we should work in partnership with the quality preschools we already have to broaden capacity, availability and choices for parents who wish to participate.

There’s a key question to be considered in this school board election. Do you want diversity of thought on the board leadership team or do you want someone who may be limited by their own past experience in the educational system?

Just because you’ve been in a system, and maybe even excelling at your job, does not mean you are qualified to keep moving up into other roles. The key is the ability to see beyond your own limited experience by bringing a different perspective and vision.

The old adage, “We’ve never done it that way before” limits creativity and growth. Electing an individual with a fresh set of ideas will enhance true diversity of thought on the board.

My life experiences and education, coupled with my knowledge of working to optimize individual outcomes throughout my professional career will uniquely position me to represent you as a member of the Steamboat Springs School board.

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