Learn more about the candidates running for Place 6 on the Grapevine-Colleyville ISD board of trustees ahead of the May 6 election. Early voting is from April 24-May 2. Candidate responses may have been edited for length, style and clarity.

Richard Newton

Experience: Texas A&M University Electrical Engineering tenured professor for nine years; former head of Texas A&M High Tech Research and Development Division; Alliance for Higher Education, former chairman and treasurer; mayor Colleyville, 2016-2022, elected three previous times; Colleyville city councilman, elected four times; executive for several Fortune 100 companies

Occupation: Executive, engineer, educator

Contact Information: [email protected]

Why are you running?

The strife, discord and contentiousness over the last few years contributed to my interest in running. I believe that my experience and abilities can help lead our district toward a better future. This election is about leadership, I am a proven leader. During my many years of service to Colleyville, I have demonstrated that I show respect to all people and listen to everyone. I will work to create a culture of transparency and trust.

What are you hoping to accomplish if you are elected?

Build a culture of transparency and trust with parents and community; Provide a quality academic and character education for every student—minus the politics; Hire, retain and support quality teachers; Ensure best practices to keep our schools secure; Establish a budget based on educational priorities; Priority No. 1 is to move GCISD forward to excellence in academics, in teacher support, in clarity of purpose and in parental participation

What are the top issues Grapevine-Colleyville ISD is facing in the coming years?

-Improving academic performance overall, but especially in bilingual and English second language. Overall, 32% of our students are below grade level, and 60% of bilingual students are below grade level. We must prioritize and fund solutions to improve academic performance. -Removing obstacles in classrooms that impact teachers’ ability to teach. Provide teachers with better pay. Put a standard curriculum in place for all core courses. -Ensuring safety and security for students and teachers.

Dianna Sager

Experience: 33 years in education, 20 years in GCISD at Colleyville Heritage High School; 12 years coaching AAU and BCI; Bachelor of Science in educational psychology, Educating Special Population from Abilene Christian University; Master of Education in educational administration from Tarleton State University; community volunteer including PTA, Booster Clubs and Inaugural Walk of Honor Committee

Occupation: Retired teacher and educator

Candidate Website: https://sagerforgcisd.com

Contact Information: 817-991-4601

Why are you running?

I have 33 years of experience as an educator with a M.Ed. in administration and retired last May after 20 years teaching and coaching at CHHS. I am living, working and raising my family in GCISD and have walked in the shoes of our educators, parents and stakeholders. I recognize the challenges our district is facing and am ready to lead us in facing those challenges as a GCISD trustee.

What are you hoping to accomplish if you are elected?

I wish to facilitate the return of respect, civility and diplomacy between GCISD trustees, stakeholders, teachers, parents and our kids. We need to ensure the fiscal stability and sustainability of GCISD responsibly while communicating clearly to those our actions impact. I will be protective of programs and academics in order to provide the quality education all of our students deserve and collaborate effectively to find the best solutions for our district.

What are the top issues Grapevine-Colleyville ISD is facing in the coming years?

The loss of experienced educators will increase gaps in our academic structure. The enticement to work here for less pay because it was the best place to work is dwindling and it will show in the quality of our applicants. Fiscal stability and sustainability must be prioritized as funding issues due to decreased enrollment and attendance are not easily fixed. Charter schools scouting our communities and political factions infiltrating our elections must also be monitored.