Castle Rock, CO

DougCo school board reaches consensus on vouchers and guns

Suzie Glassman
DougCo school board approves legislative prioritiesPhoto byDouglas County School District

By: Suzie Glassman/NewsBreak Denver

(Castle Rock, CO) Late into last week’s DougCo school board meeting, the board’s directors, who’ve made headlines for opposing views, praised each other for working together to develop the district’s legislative priorities and then voted unanimously to approve them.

“I know combining seven individual thoughts into one document is not an easy process,” said director Elizabeth Hansen. “I truly appreciate your efforts.”

“The benefit of the conversation was that the seven of us found so many areas that we overlap and agree on.”

David Ray echoed Hansen, saying he’s proud of the board’s strong positions and that he “frankly didn’t think they’d ever get to an agreement.”

“I’m proud that we (the board) can confidently say we don’t support vouchers and want gun violence to go away. I’m proud we can say that when we have people with (fire) arms in our schools, you have to be exclusive to that position, and you have to go through certain credentials to have a weapon in our school,” he said.

Hansen also said that now if someone asks her about vouchers when considering voting for or against DougCo ballot measures, she can assure them that every board member has said they are not in favor of vouchers and don’t support laws that would funnel public dollars into private schools.

Ray also said he’s pleased the board supports a student’s efforts to work with the state legislature on a bill addressing disproportionality in discipline practices, and he appreciated their conversation on equity.

Legislative priorities

The district’s list of legislative priorities serves as a guideline for state lawmakers and city officials when proposing bills or policies concerning K-12 education.

“Keep in mind this document is going to legislators for practical purposes,” said Hansen. “In my three years of sitting here, I’ve never once heard a legislator propose a bill because of something in the district’s list of priorities.

“This is not a gateway document to some massive change we’re trying to create a foundation for. This is simply a list of priorities and things to consider for our legislators.”

The document includes the district’s mission, values, and ends (goals) statements and lists where the board stands on issues that affect each.

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I'm a reporter covering the Douglas County School District in Colorado.

Denver, CO

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