The incumbent vice chairwoman of the CNMI State Board of Education, Tanya Denise King, filed her petition for candidacy at the Commonwealth Election Commission yesterday, making her the second individual to seek a post with the board.
King was elected in 2007; her term will expire in January 2013. She is now seeking re-election for another four-year term to represent Rota on the board.
Besides King, two other slots are up for grabs this midterm polls, including that of chairwoman Mary Lou Ada and member Galvin Deleon Guerrero, both representing Saipan.
King has been involved in education for 22 years and served the system for about 17 years. Besides being a former teacher and guidance counselor, King also worked as an accreditation coordinator and visited 10 schools throughout the Pacific Region.
With her deep understanding about the school system and the continuing improvements it needs, King is convinced that she can be an asset to the board and would bring much to the table.
When asked about the major accomplishments and legacies of her first term, King was quick to point out that the board-of which she is a part of-brought “equity, transparency, and accountability” to the system.
She cited as accomplishments the passage of policies that bring progress and improvement to the system in general. Among these are the implementation of the full-day kindergarten program in schools and the expected approval of a new sick leave donation policy.
King disclosed that Rota was among the first schools that successfully enforced the full-day kindergarten program.
King's endorsement of the new sick leave donation was also described as noteworthy. It allows sick PSS personnel to avail of sick leave donations from peers when they need to seek medical treatment outside the Commonwealth. From the 160 hours of sick leave currently allowed employees, the new policy endorses up to 480 hours of sick leave donations. King said this will bring nothing but positive results to the system, with loyal and productive employees at all levels. King revealed that she worked and lobbied for the proposal for seven months before it was adopted by the committee. This policy is expected to be approved by the full board in today's meeting.
Also among King's top goals is the continued transparency and accountability at the system as well as the importance of building local capacity. King wants to bring equal educational opportunities to Saipan, Rota and Tinian students. She said she will encourage more online and technical vocational programs for the two islands so they can also be provided equitable educational opportunities like their counterparts on Saipan.