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Metro student runs for board of education

Tay Anderson brings a student perspective to the election

Anderson is one of the youngest candidates to ever run for the Denver board of education. Photo courtesy of Tay Anderson

 

At just 20 years old, Tay Anderson is one of the youngest people to ever run for a seat on the Denver Board of Education. In early August, Anderson announced that he will be running for the at large seat in the 2019 election, a position which entails the representative to represent the Denver School Board as a whole. While the election is more than a year away, Anderson wanted to hop into the race early to make sure that he sticks out as a candidate. As the election rolls around in 2019, Anderson will bring a student perspective to his campaign.

Anderson is currently a sophomore at Metro State majoring in education. When asked how he juggles running a campaign, working, and going to school full time he said, “It’s definitely not easy. It’s challenging, but one of the best things about running a campaign is that the people around me help me juggle my busy schedule. It’s not easy [by] any means, but it is rewarding.” 

“With school shootings being prevalent right now, I want to make sure that when parents drop their kids off every morning they know that their child is being dropped off and will be safe.” Anderson said. “Kids are scared and afraid, and we as educators need to create an environment where kids know they are safe.”

Anderson believes that his platform—which follows five pillars: school safety, students first, educators, community, and special education—can help the Denver schools flourish.    

His school safety platform covers the concept that schools shouldn’t feel like a prison to the children. Students should feel like they are coming to a safe place to learn, and parents should feel safe dropping their kids off at school for the day. One potential solution Anderson has is rethinking the budget for the Denver school district and adding more resources for mental health resources and safety training for teachers.   

With “students first,” Anderson believes that the students of Denver Public Schools should have a legitimate seat at the table when it comes to their own education.   

Anderson also hopes to support educators. “We need to invest in our educators more. Educators are not just classroom teachers, they are all of our employees in Denver Public Schools.” 

The next pillar is community, which covers wanting to bring the community to the board room. He plans to listen to everyone who lives in the community and are neighbors to the schools. Anderson wants to hear the ideas and concerns of people who not only have children in the Denver Public School district but who also neighbor the schools set up in those districts.

The last pillar is special education. Anderson plans to increase the funding and support in the special education area. “We have seen in most schools special education classes are segregated from most of the school, and I want to change that,” Anderson said. “I will work with professionals in this area to understand the complexities of this department.”

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