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Doy announces board candidacy

With nearly six months to go before school board elections, the race for Rudy Edwards’ empty seat is already heating up. School activist Geoff Doy announced his candidacy last week for the District 1 position on the board.

The North Bend resident has been active in the school district for several years. He helped organize the Valley Voters for Education’s support of the school bond which passed in March. Doy is also active at Snoqualmie Elementary School, where he has a daughter in third grade and a son starting kindergarten in September. His experience as a sales and marketing executive have prepared him for serving on the board, he said.

Education is “certainly one of the cornerstones, if not the cornerstone of making a successful community,” he said.

Money and growth are the two biggest problems facing the district, according to Doy, who has few criticisms for the current board, but does identify areas for improvement.

While the economic recession has delayed the expected growth in the Snoqualmie Valley’s student population, Mount Si High School will not be able to handle the burgeoning population in a few years, forecasters say.

“What’s the best solution? Is it a new high school? Or reconfiguring the grades? There are many solutions,” Doy said. “We’re going to have to get creative.”

The board also needs to address class sizes, which Doy says are too large, and improve its communication with the community.

Doy also wants the board to more proactively lobby state legislators to support education.

“Our voice is a small one, but if we’re all saying the same thing, legislators listen eventually,” he said.

The state is not providing enough money for schools, according to Doy.

The state recently passed a bill increasing money for schools, which was co-sponsored by Representative Glenn Anderson, (R-Fall City), but it is phased in over the next nine years.

“We have to find a way to fund what we do now,” Doy said.

State funding cannot be overhauled overnight, Anderson said recently.

“You can’t turn a battleship on a dime,” he said.

The school board needs someone with a business mind, said Edwards, who has not endorsed any board candidate.

The community has to develop a solid tax base to support the schools, he said.

Whoever succeeds him must listen to the community.

“Sometimes the public doesn’t talk loudly. They talk quietly, and you have to have a skill for listening to those softer conversations,” he said.

Doy can be contacted at geoffrey.w.doy@comcast.net.

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