Learn more about the candidates running for Place 7 on the Plano 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. The incumbent is identified with an asterisk.

Katherine Chan Goodwin

Experience: Mother of two Plano ISD graduates, Plano resident (33 years), board of every PTA for every PISD school that my children attended (16 years, currently Barron Elementary School PTA Treasurer), PISD Diversity Advisory Committee and Council of PTAs Antiracism Committee, executive board member and treasurer of both the ArtCentre of Plano and Plano West Rotary, Leadership Plano (Class 37), former CEO of commercial real estate company (20-plus years), M.A. Dispute Resolution, Southern Methodist University

Occupation: Dispute resolution consultant

Contact Information: 214-728-9260. [email protected]

Why are you running?

We can all agree that we want our children to be safe and educated. The partisan stunts that dominate the public education conversation are damaging distractions. As trustee, I will focus on the business of educating our students, putting student achievement back on track. My children thrive because of their experiences at Plano ISD. I want all children who follow them to have that same opportunity to soar and take their families with them.

What do you hope to accomplish if elected?

[I hope to accomplish] ensuring educational excellence and equity by closing the opportunity and achievement gaps for all our students, whomever they are, wherever they come from. [I hope to accomplish] finding the funding for: innovative programs to meet all of our students’ needs; our teachers, staffs and leaders to attract, develop and retain the best talent in every role; collaborative and safe environments to create and deploy best practices. More smiles for everybody.

What are the top issues facing PISD in the coming years?

Maintaining adequate funding, given the attacks on public education and the budget deficit-inducing “recapture” payments Plano ISD must pay; teacher, support staff, and school leadership recruitment, development and retention; rebuilding of trust between students, parents, teachers, the community and the district lost due to time away from each other during the COVID-19, and the isolation, anxiety and fear in our communities these days; removing all barriers to effective learning for all our students

Simon Salinas

Experience: I have experience from both sides of Plano ISD classrooms that I want to use on our school board. I'm a 2022 Plano ISD and Collin College graduate, certified pharmacy technician, substitute educator, former Plano ISD Diversity Advisory Committee member, LULAC member, Pass the Props Plano ISD volunteer and a Plano ISD PTAs volunteer. We need someone on our school board who understands our district's current concerns.

Occupation: Substitue educator

Candidate Website: https://simonforpisd.com

Contact Information: 214-307-4605. [email protected]

Why are you running?

I was a Plano ISD student, and I witnessed how decisions made by the Plano ISD board of trustees affected me, my classmates and my teachers significantly. I am a recent graduate of Plano ISD, not a politician. We don't have a trustee on the board that has attended, taught and volunteered for PISD. It should be preferred to have a trustee who has been in the programs they make to advocate for.

What do you hope to accomplish if elected?

I will bring a different perspective to the dais. Our decisions should allow teachers, staff and students to excel in their teaching and learning. I will be respectful with taxes and will ask questions to make sure funds are being equally distributed. Additionally, I have a huge goal to continue making connections with businesses, organizations and groups of community leaders that haven’t been reached out to before.

What are the top issues facing PISD in the coming years?

We are facing a near-decade deficit, decreasing student enrollment and have a recapture payment of $250 million each year to the State of Texas. Recapture needs reform. While pro-public school legislators are attempting to reform recapture, trustees need to continue finding creative sources of income. Teachers and parents deserve to be heard. We’re losing their trust because of the decisions the board is making without gathering input.

Cody Weaver*

Experience: I graduated from Texas A&M University in 2013. I have served on the Plano ISD school board for four years. I have served on the Plano ISD School Safety and Security Committee since 2019 and currently serve on the Board Legislative Subcommittee. I am a graduate of Leadership Plano, Class 38. I founded the Collin County Juvenile Detention Center Foundation Fund of Communities Foundation of Texas. Above all, I am a Jewish husband and father.

Occupation: Licensed real estate broker, founder of Local 18 Realty

Candidate Website: https://codyweaver.com

Contact Information: 214-336-4956. [email protected]

Why are you running?

I am seeking re-election to promote parental rights, keep politics out of the classroom and support classroom teachers. In addition, I will honor my first-term campaign promises of continuously improving school safety and security, practicing fiscal responsibility, expanding career and technical education opportunities for all students and championing transparency and accountability. I am also committed to providing more educational opportunities through academy models, such as fine arts; classical; science, technology, engineering, arts and math; and dual language academies.

What do you hope to accomplish if re-elected?

If re-elected, I will uphold parental rights through policy. I recently submitted revisions for adoption to six Plano ISD local policies to promote transparency, increase accountability and reduce bureaucratic hurdles that stifle parents' access to appropriate due process. I am committed to providing Plano ISD students with the best curriculum, library and instructional materials, free of political bias. Lastly, I will support effective discipline management strategies to address behavior issues in the classroom.

What are the top issues facing PISD in the coming years?

Plano ISD's top three issues in the coming years are recapture, teacher retention and recruitment, and addressing the academic needs of our changing demographics. Plano ISD is headed toward a fiscal cliff with a growing budget deficit due to a broken school funding formula. We must address teacher pay, campus culture, discipline and professional development. Lastly, we need an effective curriculum, targeted intervention and mentorship for our at-risk students.