Green files to run again for APS board

Published 5:41 pm Friday, September 2, 2022

Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of stories looking at the candidates for Austin Public Schools board.

In her 23rd year on the Austin Public Schools Board, Kathy Green has seen a little bit of everything and she’s hoping that experience will carry her forward into another term.

Green, current chair of the board, said that during her time on the school board there have been a variety of challenges that make her well-suited to continuing to serve on the board.

“When I first started serving, finances in the district were a concern and how we can put things together for stability,” said Green, who first started serving on the board in 2000. “That pendulum is returning. We’re coming around now to where financials are at a point where inflation has caught up.”

Those challenges are coming more and more to the front as the school makes a  third run at passing a referendum in November, which would increase revenue in the district to around $2.48 million. Currently, the district has the lowest operating levy in the Big Nine and one of the lowest in the state at $42.70 per student.

If the referendum passes it would raise per student spending by $470 for 10 years, bringing the operating levy to a total of $512.70 a student.

However, Green is also seeing other areas that her experience could lend to as the district works to meet all student needs. Green also said that the district is facing more complex issues than 20 years ago.

“What hasn’t changed is concerns for students and programming,” Green said. “I think as we see student populations changing, it’s critical for us as a district to keep up with those needs. Everything needs resources.”

Should she be elected to another term, Green said that her experience could also help usher in two new board members.

“My experience on the board is helpful to the transition of new people coming on,” Green said. “We’re going to have two new spots. I think I can add stability to the transition and I think that’s important.”

It could also lend to the future as the district looks to work with a projected increase in enrollment and how to provide the necessary resources to fully reach the capacity of students.

“We have been very nimble in pivoting to new programs,” Green said. “New programs in terms of languages we need to support, be it economic standings we need to support. We as a district are used to those critical pivots and I anticipate those are going to continue.”