Having read some of the negative letters that have been published here, I feel I must tell what I know of Ken Smith, Northshore school board candidate. I believe your readers deserve to know more about my experience with his clear devotion to serving our community’s kids and their families.
My daughters are both Northshore students. I met Ken several years ago when our daughters were teammates on a volleyball team. I quickly discovered that Ken was an incredible resource of all things factual. Any select volleyball parent will tell you that this arena is fraught with secrecy, complexity, and high-stakes binding contracts, which families cannot cancel once signed. I had no idea how much I had to learn! Ken willingly served as a resource and helped advise me on many of our local teams, as well as the high skill potential he saw in my daughter. His information came from his extensive research on every single team – he had attended info sessions, questioned the club directors, spoke with other parents, and had done far more legwork than anyone I had spoken with. Mind you, our daughters were separating into different teams at this point, so he had no vested interest in being a resource for us. However, I was always impressed with his responsiveness, thoughtfuln ess, and again – unbiased, factual representation of the options that faced both of us. Each year, he is one of the resources I turn to to find out more new information about changes in clubs.
How is this charming story relevant to his viability as a school board candidate?
Because I see the same thorough approach and devotion come through in his activity as a candidate. And the same goal – to improve the lives of our families and kids by making sure we all understand what is really going on behind the scenes – and the potential options, and the impact of our decisions.
Many times in the past few weeks, when parents or community members ask detailed questions, Ken is very often the resource that presents very factual, detailed, unbiased information. He does not present his opinion as fact, but simply advises what he knows to be true. He follows this up with his own questions, concerns, recommendations, or other information to engage parents in helping to make a decision about that issue. In my opinion, he is already showing us what type of board member he would be. His posts are always relevant, contextual, and aligned with what is best for the kids and families in our district.
Those who represent Ken as disengaged or “having an axe to grind” have clearly never engaged with him on an important issue. Yes, he is driven in his position, because he can see important flaws in the way things are being handled. He knows there are options that would be better choices. He has the credentials, tenacity, and altruistic mindset that would make him a powerful addition to the school board. I, for one, would be grateful to have someone who is willing to do this kind of research into issues and communicate it to those of us who are not as in-the-know on each issue.
My request is this: judge Ken on what YOU have researched about his position and qualifications, what YOU see about who he is, or talk to those who know him – do not rely on what other candidates and their supporters may say at the 11th hour before the election. There is plenty of information within Facebook posts alone that can show you that he has the very best for the kids and families of the Northshore district at heart.
We have serious educational issues to solve. Maybe it will take someone like Ken, with a PhD in government accounting and the tenacity to get to the bottom of things, to finally get our Northshore kids the attention they deserve. Ken Smith has my vote.
Karen Quilantang, Woodinville