Donna White for School Board
Donna White 
Johnston County Board of Education (R)
1330 W. Main St. 
Clayton, NC 
Term Expires: 2012

I believe in open and transparent government and the wise use of taxpayer money. Over the last four years, due to budgetary cuts at the federal, state and local level, the Johnston County School System has lost $61 million dollars. I serve as the financial committee chair and even with these cuts we were able to maintain the quality in our classrooms by opening budget discussions to the public through our "kitchen table" meetings and ask the public what we should cut to save. The public spoke, and through their recommendations and our own we cut central office staff, saved over 1.6 million dollars in utility cost, and streamlined operations and helped our local county commissioners with debt service.

I believe that teachers, staff and administrators should be respected and have a voice in their school system, where each employee has the right to share their views and ideas and has a liaison from the school board that they can talk to if needed. The employees of the Johnston County School System are given every opportunity to be aware and give feedback. The transparency of our system has improved from a "D" to an "A" based on a John Locke Foundation survey. Our teachers and staff have led our system to the highest ranking in all seven standards of the AdvancedED District Association, the highest ranking ever given a school system by this national accrediting organization. We received the American School Boards Association National Magna Award for "Graduate Program: Solving the Drop Out Problem". We recently received the Center for American Progress' highest state ranking for Return on Investment for Academic Achievement Per Dollar Spent. Our teachers, staff, and administrators feel respected, and these are their results.
I believe that each parent should have a voice in their child's education. I have been available by phone, email, text and in person to person meetings to provide an opportunity for each and every parent who wanted to contact me about any issue or idea they have regarding their child's education, discipline, extracurricular activities etc. 
Through the improved transparency via various media improvements our parents learn about what is happening in the whole system. Advisory Councils, PTA/PTSO organizations, and specific interest organizations, e.g. athletic and band boosters, offer opportunities for parental involvement that give our parents a voice as well as an opportunity to volunteer. Ongoing focus groups allow an open opportunity for parent feedback.
I believe that we have a great school system that has been much improved over the last four years. Testimonials of parents, teachers, and administrators reflect that our system is headed in the right direction to assure that our students get the best education possible. While the system has suffered budget cuts in excess of $61 million dollars since 2008, student performance continues to remain in the top 20% of all NC school systems.

End of Grade test results place JCS as #18 out of 115 NC school systems, State testing results continue to be above average, SATs remain above the state and national average, while numbers of students taking the test continue to increase. We have zero low performing schools in No Child Left Behind, but in 2008, we had several schools in the low performing category. JCS graduation cohort rate increased from 2008 to 2012 by 7.3%. The drop out rate decreased from 4.92 to 3.28%.  655 students received "work ready" certificates and credentials in our career and technical education in 2011-2012.

JCS increased our mobile units by 19 since 2011 and we are growing over a school a year which brings us to our biggest need in 2012, a plan for adding classrooms to some schools and building new elementary and middle schools... The Challenge for 2012-2016. The second challenge is to continue to meet the needs of increased technology and the infrastructure to assure that the hard and soft tools are present and that our teachers have the ongoing professional development to keep on track in the global learning society.

Click here for the Donna White School Board .com website.

Click here for the Johnston County Board of Education website.

Donna White Candidate for School Board of Johnston County Nov 2012