The mission of DCCCD is to equip students for successful living and responsible citizenship in a rapidly changing local, national and world community. We must remember that the DCCCD’s priority is to educate students. If elected, I would urge the Board to create Trustee Forums with community (including faculty, staff, students, community members) to create more dialogue. We must also remember DCCCD’s purpose of ensuring Dallas County is vibrant, growing and economically stable for future generations. Many Dallas Citizens do not know of the different offerings at the seven community colleges, including trade programs, early childcare centers, GED preparation, ESL courses as well as traditional associate degree program. I would encourage a heavy marketing campaign to help the community learn about all the great things happening at our local community colleges.
As more than 50% of first time-college students in Texas are starting at the community college level because of the rising costs of higher education, it is important to keep tuition accessible. At $59 per credit hour, DCCCD provides an affordable educational opportunity for thousands of students and is the second lowest in Texas. As a trustee, I'd be an advocate for students to ensure DCCCD maintains an affordable tuition rate. I am also a proponent of the dual credit program and Early College High School program because many of our students are not college ready when they come to DCCCD campuses. These programs help to expose students to college level courses while they are still in high school. I would also encourage the promotion of innovative career technology offerings and help our students achieve their goal of attending a four-year university.
Keep Taxes Low
With 55% of funding for DCCCD coming from local taxes, it is important that we keep the level of taxation low. As the state continues to decrease funding for community colleges, the next Board must be prepared to not only be efficient stewards of our county’s tax dollars but to continue seeking diverse funding sources that will prevent an increase in property taxes. As a board member, I would be an advocate for efficiencies in budget and searching for private funding/grants and partnerships with private sector before considering an increase of taxes and tuition. I would also be a proponent of more board interaction with state legislature.
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