For school board district 2, Katrina Montgomery is running unopposed. PATH reached out to her to get her perspective on gifted ed in the Tahoma School District. Below is her unfiltered, unedited response to our questions.
Name: Katrina Montgomery
Q. Why are you running for office?
For the past 11 years, I have been deeply involved and committed to the Tahoma School District. This involvement has given me the opportunity to get acquainted with just about every aspect of our district and gain valuable insight into Tahoma’s strengths and weaknesses. As a parent of two Tahoma students, a district volunteer and past district employee, I understand the impact the board has on all our students and community. It is my mission to hold Tahoma to the highest standards in order to provide quality instruction resulting in a viable path and success for every Tahoma student.
Q. Describe your familiarity with Tahoma School District’s Highly Capable program and how you believe it compares to other districts’ Highly Capable programs.
As I’ve never had a child in this program, I have a very basic level of understanding. It is my understanding that entrance into our Highly Capable program has changed a bit over the years. Back when my oldest was in second grade, students had to be nominated in order to be tested to gain entrance. Since then, the nomination process has been eliminated and currently all second-grade students are tested and have equal access to the program.
I do not know how our program compares to other districts but would be interested in learning more about this. I do know that our program drops off for the most part at the end of fifth grade. Upon entering middle school students are put back into mainstream classes, except for math where they are placed on a path based on skill level and a ninth-grade foreign language option they can take in eighth grade. At the high school level, they have several paths once again based on skill level.
Q. What changes (if any) for Tahoma School District’s Highly Capable program would you endorse?
As I don’t know what specific changes PATH has in mind, I can’t answer this question but welcome the opportunity to discuss this further. I do feel it is important that as a school district all students are challenged and we have the tools and resources available to teach and engage our children at the highest levels possible.
Q. What do you want parents of Tahoma School District children deemed “Highly Capable” to know about you?
I am all about honesty and integrity. I am in this 100% for all our kids. I truly believe that success for every student in Tahoma is possible. Every decision I make will always be student centered and made with the best of intentions.