LIST OF ISSUES
Mental Health Awareness in Schools
Mental health issues can lead to many problems in schools including poor performance, bullying, violence, truancy, and other behavioral problems. Our school system should do a better job of addressing mental health as well as educating about mental health. Students should be taught what good mental health and self-care look like, as well as warning signs of mental problems in themselves and their peers. Seeking help for mental health issues continues to have a stigma surrounding it which could be removed by talking about mental health more frequently and honestly.
Rachel is passionate about the mental health needs of students being met. Rachel will be an advocate for students and ensure that 504 and IEP become an easier process to navigate as it is one of the biggest concerns of voters who have children who require an IEP.
Though efforts have been made to increase teacher salaries, it has not been enough, and the Fauquier County School system still experiences a high rate of teacher attrition (12% in 2018). Far too many teachers have left our district for jobs in surrounding counties (Over 50% went to Prince William County). The students of Fauquier County deserve a great education and that is impossible without the ability to hire and keep great teachers.
Rachel recognizes that Fauquier County is behind the curve in teacher pay and will work to ensure that teachers are qualified, certified, and well-payed in order to best educate our students.
Expansion of Therapeutic Day Treatment (TDT)
TDT is a mental health service offered in school and after school for students with mental health problems who need extra support. It is funded by Medicaid and by FAPT and is contracted with a private company that offers mental health services. TDT should be expanded to all Fauquier County Public Schools and include services both during and after school, as well as during the summer. TDT services are already being further utilized by the school systems in surrounding counties such as Culpeper County, Orange County, Augusta County, Prince William County, and Loudoun County.
Rachel has an in-depth knowledge of TDT and how it should be run. Rachel will bring that knowledge to make a positive change in our school system for all students.
School Board Visibility
School Board members in Fauquier County have one public meeting per month, but that shouldn't be the only time that citizens see their elected representatives advocating for their schools.
Visibility is essential in keeping the community involved in what is going on in their schools as that has a direct affect on their children.
Rachel will make efforts to attend more than just the monthly meetings, but will often be seen in the halls of schools across the county listening to concerns and bringing them up at board meetings. Rachel will also hold regular town halls open to the public where concerns can be addressed.