Bremerton School District election candidates

As elections come down to the wire, each candidate for the Bremerton School District Director Position 1 was asked two questions: What are the five biggest issues and your stance on them and why should voters choose you over your opponent?

Below are the answers provided from either their website, election pamphlet or response to the email.

Karen J. Bolton v. Lance Byrd

Incumbent Bolton’s top issues include aging buildings, graduation assurances, continuous improvement efforts and communication. Bolton’s in favor of Bremerton’s facilities plan. The plan focuses on how they measure up with the district’s educational program standards, enrollment trends and projected demands through 2043. In addition, Bolton looks to develop a three- to five-year districtwide strategic plan with metrics to improve graduation and more. She also hopes to improve communication through quarterly partnership convenings and sharing success stories, innovations, and profiles of exceptional students and staff.

Lastly, Bolton believes she is the right pick because she has a strong commitment to education, a clear vision for improving schools, and she thoroughly enjoys working collaboratively with diverse stakeholders. She sticks to her quote, “We are here for the students.”

Byrd’s first issue includes the erosion of parental rights. He believes the blanket exclusion of parents from a child’s life-altering decisions should be pushed back against. For example, if a student is suffering from gender dysphoria, parents can be left out of the loop and lead to medical procedures without the parents’ knowledge or consent. Byrd is also concerned about the school curriculum and materials, and supporting merit and equality. Byrd wants all students to reach their goals and fulfill their needs regardless of race or hardship.

Byrd said he stands out over Bolton because he brings a different perspective, experiences and skill sets. Byrd is experienced in the technology industry, including CPU chip manufacturing at Intel, to creating large-scale messaging systems at Amazon Web Services. He hopes to bring opportunities to the students and see them succeed at all levels.