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Nicholas Dale Bevins

District 7 Candidate: Nicholas Bevins

Candidate Questions and Answers

Affiliations

Do you currently hold another public office?

No

Do you have any affiliations with the Albuquerque Public Schools?

Yes, Multiple current and past APS teachers in my family.

Availability

Are you available to attend board meetings on the first and third Wednesday nights of the month at 5:00 p.m. and special board meetings at additional times?

Yes

Additionally, there are five board committees that mostly meet once a month at 7:30 a.m., 3:00 p.m., 3:30 p.m., 4:00 p.m., or 5:00 p.m. Are you available to attend all committee meetings? Board committees are committees of the whole, which means that all board members attend all committee meetings.

Yes

Periodically, the board must meet during daytime hours for board meetings, budget hearings, and luncheons. Are you available during daytime hours for these activities?

Yes

In addition to regularly scheduled meetings, the board minimally requires approximately 20-25 hours a week in reading, researching, miscellaneous meetings, school visits, telephone calls, and e-mail correspondence; many board members spend much more time than that. Can your schedule accommodate the extra time involved in serving as a member of the Board of Education?

Yes


Experience

Answers should be brief and concise.

Why do you want to be a board member for Albuquerque Public Schools?

I am running because the APS Board desperately needs fresh perspective. At 25-years-­old, I would be the only member who has attended New Mexico public schools this century. Modem day education has changed, and we need recent first-hand experience at the table.

What is your interest in education?

Education underpins everything in our society. Ensuring that our children are given the best possible environment to grow emotionally, intellectually, personally, and socially is paramount to our future as a society.

In what ways will you support the mission and vision of the district?

I will elevate the vision of the district from one of complacency with the administration's incompetence, to one which embraces a bold mandate of empowering our teachers and students.

How will you work with the superintendent?

I will hold the superintendent to account on all budgetary issues, confront them on refusing to be ambitious in their vision for our school system, and call them out on refusing to accept input from APS staff such as teachers, EA's, bus drivers, custodial staff, etc.

What is your past and current involvement with Albuquerque Public Schools?

My family past and current have worked as teachers for the district, and I care deeply about the staff at every level of our schools.

What should be the relationship between the superintendent and Board of Education?

The board should hold the superintendent and all administration to account on every metric pertaining to our school system. This should be done via exercising our voting power over the budget.

What qualities and skills would you bring to the Board of Education?

At 25, I'll be the only APS board member to have attended public school in the 21st century. I understand how to address cyber bullying, because I'm literate in the ever­evolving online apps and terminology being used by my generation. I understand the issues with the testing culture because I grew up in it. I know the trauma of participating in an active shooter drill because they started while I was in school. What will I bring to the Board? I will bring a crucial perspective.

What school or community volunteer activities have you participated in related to the community?

I have taught citizenship classes within our immigrant community, delivered care packages of food and essential supplies during the pandemic, helped in homeless outreach with volunteer groups, cleaned up used needles in our parks, and much more.

How do you plan to work with constituents?

I will be knocking doors and holding open meetings outside of campaigning season, because I care about community participation, not just re-election.

What do you see as opportunities and challenges to the district?

We have a budgetary windfall that administration and state lawmakers refuse to use, despite the dire straights we find ourselves in. I fight to release funds from the Land Grant Permanent Fund.

What do you think is the best way for the district to accomplish the district’s goals?

  • Albuquerque Public Schools will provide equitable access and opportunity in a safe and supportive environment that addresses the individual needs of students.
  • Albuquerque Public Schools will align the work of schools and departments and create a system of high-quality accountability for instruction, social, emotional and physical health and safety.
  • Albuquerque Public Schools will create a clear direction for efficient and effective operations to better serve students and improve staff morale.
  • Albuquerque Public Schools will improve all modes of communications to better inform and engage the Albuquerque community invested in public education.

The only way to accomplish these stated goals is by ending fiscal austerity measures, empowering primary workers instead of the administration, moving towards a Montessori / Dewey model of education, lowering class sizes, investing in school infrastructure, raising pay for all employees including educational assistants, increasing the diversity of voices at every table, and getting more young people with the passion for change into political office.

If elected, how will you work with the current board?

I will work with the existing board members where possible to execute a progressive and bold vision for our school district. If it proves to be not possible, then I will work with the community to apply pressure as an electorate and vote out complacent board members.

Regarding any offers for mentorship from current and past board members. We are 50th in education; I am uninterested in learning how they ran the place because they ran it into the ground.