Matt Kelly for Fredericksburg, Virginia City Council

Education - Public Schools

Education

Funding education is the largest and most important piece of the city’s budget. Providing both quality education for our children and ensuring they have opportunities for careers when they leave, whether to college or not, should be our primary goal. Bricks and mortar is only a small part of this effort. We need to focus on teachers and programs that ensure all our children should have the opportunity to achieve success in life no matter what course they choose.

What Has Been Accomplished:

  • Worked to adopt Public-Private Ordinance allowing for the construction of the New James Monroe High School and Lafayette Upper Elementary School.
  • Served on the site selection committee and design committee for both James Monroe High School and Lafayette Upper Elementary School.
  • Championed and served on the Council/School Board Working Group to try and build better cooperation between the City Council and School Board in long-term planning.

The Next Four Years:

  • Work with the School Board to support programs to provide opportunities to disadvantaged, English Language Learners (ELL) and minority students.
  • Work with the School Board, and regional partners to include Germanna Community College and the University of Mary Washington, to develop a robust workforce development program.
  • Look to develop a multi-year funding plan for the schools.

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As we move forward to ensure the goal that ALL students are successful in college or the job market, parents need to be engaged to encourage their children and work with the schools and council in meeting our shared goals.

Council needs to support programs that encourage students to stay in school and give them the opportunities to go to college or provide the schools to get a good paying job. Our school system is too small to achieve this goal alone. We need to start looking for regional partners to make this happen.

City schools face economic, cultural, and linguistic challenges that require more than bricks & mortar and technology. Council needs to partner with the schools to provide resources to deal with these issues and provide programming that help ALL our students become productive members of the community.

New buildings are only a small part of education. More significant is having good teachers, providing the latest in technology and support for both. Matt has toured our schools, and talked to teachers, to identify what is needed to provide opportunities for ALL our children.

Matt not only voted for the building of the New James Monroe High School and Lafayette Upper Elementary School he served on the site selection and design committees for both. He also worked on the Public Private Education Act ordinance which made the schools possible.