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Q&A with District 622 School Board challenger Danny Porter

Danny Porter

• Age: 42

• City of residence: Maplewood

• Years lived in district: 6

• Education: M.S.W., L.I.C.S.W., director of special education license, licensed independent clinical social worker, licensed school social work; master's from University of St. Thomas-M.S.W., master's in social work/post master's-director of special education from Hamline University

• Occupation: District lead clinical school social worker on special assignment, Northeast Metro School District 916

• Notable community and civic involvement: Actively involved and contributes to: serving on the School Safety and Technical Assistance Council; Special Education Advisory Committee with Minnesota Department of Education; president of the Board of Directors for Minnesota Association for Children's Mental Health; Board of Directors for MN Adopt; and Minnesota School Social Workers Association. Named Minnesota School Social Worker of the year in 2012. Actively involved in volunteering in youth supported services for more than 25 years with experience and leadership working for youth and in school systems.

• Contact:; 612-998-3387

Why are you running for District 622 School Board?

There is no better place in which to provide service than by serving on the local school board. Our children are Minnesota and our nation's future. My work in the school system, passion for helping children, and having two children attending school in District 622 are a few of the reasons why I am committed to continue to make a difference in my community for all our children's education.

What are the biggest issues in District 622 for residents living in Woodbury?

Technology needs, diversity, and accountability for student achievement. Focus on adaptability and growth—with the future—while keeping central focus on students to work across cultures. Ongoing support and direction to strengthen partnerships and opportunities that expand learning. Efficient use of resources, while maintaining financial and fiscal responsibility to the community.

How do you plan to address these issues if elected?

Core values:

1) To be financially and fiscally responsible—includes hiring and retaining the best educational staff in the state.

2) Community and family focused—community, educators, students and parents are at the table making decisions.

3) Curriculum, technology and quality instruction—supporting/advancing students to be creative thinkers, innovators and problem solvers.

4) Inclusive curriculum—every student should have access to learning that incorporates their specific needs and learning style.

What distinguishes you from the other candidate?

I believe that my experience of more than 25 years in education and leadership working with youth —in school systems—will support the relationships and help bridge systems together to create the change that is needed. I believe my ties with the community will help support change. I have two children and work in a school district, giving me multiple perspectives on identifying needs.