You can count on me.

"Katy represents the best in public service.  She's experienced, fair-minded, and most of all she understands the responsibility of protecting the public trust."
- Former Washoe County Sheriff, Mike Haley

"I served with Katy Simon Holland for more than a decade as a fellow public executive and as a fellow Board member in EDAWN and other civic organizations, and I know she is uniquely qualified to bring accountability and leadership to the Washoe County School Board when it needs it the most.  She has my support."

- Krys Bart, former CEO of Reno-Tahoe Airport  

"No doubt, Katy Simon Holland will bring to the School Board what she delivered when serving as County Manager -- fiscal responsibility, high expectations, thoughtful strategic planning and a passion for excellence!"   

- Debbie Cylke, former WCSD Administrator

“Katy has demonstrated the leadership, accountability and results we sorely need on our Washoe County School Board.  She has my vote.”

– Norm Dianda, Q&D Construction

"Katy Simon Holland is a trusted leader who will focus on students and get results."

-  Dr. Jim Hager, former WCSD Superintendent

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About

Now is the time for proven leadership

In a few short years, the Washoe County School District Board of Trustees has gone from being the #1 School Board in the US to one that has lost the confidence of the public it serves. Now is the time for strong, proven leadership to rebuild and restore the District's effectiveness. We owe nothing less to the hard-working students, teachers, parent volunteers and staff that are striving for excellence every day. No other candidate for the School Board has my demonstrated skills, experience, and results in guiding a public organization the size and scope of WCSD. It would be my honor to serve. 

Our school district faces tremendous challenges in meeting the needs of our children and our regional economy.  As the former CEO of a nationally recognized public organization, along with a unique combination of experience and skills, I will help the school district strengthen public confidence and accelerate student achievement at all levels.

  • Demonstrated expertise in financial management
  • Oversaw $800 million budget and 3200 employees
  • Experienced in collective bargaining agreements
  • Committed to innovation
  • Long-term vision and strategic plan developer

Now is the time to move our children and our educational system forward. It’s critical and it takes firm leadership. That’s where I come in:

  • Masters graduate from University of Nevada’s College of Education
  • 15 years as Washoe County Manager
  •  Gained extensive understanding of Open Meeting Law while managing over 400 public meetings 
  • CEO of $800 million tax-supported public entity. Earned a 90%-plus voter approval rating and received awards in fiscal responsibility, all during our most recent economic downturn
  •  Volunteer board member for 17 different organizations, including United Way, Children’s Cabinet and a volunteer at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northern Nevada
  • High school counselor as well as teacher at TMCC, UNR and the USC graduate school

I will apply my energy and experience to help strengthen and restore the Washoe County School District to a position of leadership. I promise that and am asking for your vote to make that happen.

 

Endorsements

  • AGC
  • Reno Sparks Chambger of Commerce
  • Jessica Sferrazza, form Reno City Council Member
  • The Builders Association of Northern Nevada
  • The Reno-Sparks Chamber
  • The Associated General Contractors
  • The Builders Association
  • The Laborer’s Union
  • The Northern Nevada Central Labor Council
  • The Washoe School Police Officers Association
  • The Washoe School Principals Association
  • The Reno-Sparks Association of Realtors PAC
  • Assemblyman Pat Hickey
  • Dick Gammick
  • Mike Haley
  • Dr. Jim Hager
  • Krys Bart
  • Debbie Cylke
  • Jessica Sferrazza
  • Sheila Leslie
  • Mrs. Dolores Feemster
  • Julia Ratti
  • John Frankovich
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Priorities

Fiscal responsibility, accountability and transparency

The District needs to re-evaluate its decisions and decision-making processes from top to bottom. Too much is unclear and unknown to the tax-paying citizens. We have to make fiscal responsibility, accountability and transparency our highest priorities. In addition, we need to make the difficult decisions necessary for the long-term financial health of the District. We can't keep robbing the fund balance to make the budget.

 

Restoring public confidence and trust

The best leaders listen carefully to those affected by their decisions, then take responsibility for the decisions they make. There is always more that the School Board and executive leadership of the District can do to listen well to the public, and to acknowledge and take responsibility for their actions, good or bad. It will be my priority to give community involvement in decisions an even greater emphasis in all we do in order to build and restore trust.

 

Reducing School Overcrowding

Our WCSD schools are at an average 98+% capacity today.  We have some schools that are at 148% of capacity, with children taking classes and tests in hallways, separated from other students only by blue plastic tarps. How can we expect them to achieve excellence at math or science in these conditions? In order to sustain our region's economic prosperity, we must not only educate our children well for the new economy, but also provide modern facilities for them and for the 10,000+ additional students expected in coming years. Communities that do not invest in their infrastructure, including good schools for their young people, will not remain competitive in the global economy.  The proposed sales tax ballot question can only be used to build and improve facilities. If it passes, the District will need to quickly and efficiently organize to manage long-deferred construction. If it fails, the District will need to quickly work with citizens, legislators and others to implement what will undoubtedly be less than desirable alternatives. Not long ago, Washoe County voters approved a tax increase to fund a new regional Animal Shelter. Our children deserve no less.

 

Staff Excellence

While the immediate crisis in the shortage of teachers in Washoe County has been addressed due to measures implemented at the State level, these measures are not good solutions for the long term. Relying on individuals with little or no classroom experience and inadequate training to teach our kids is not going to make us a world class school system. We need to think long-term about elevating the dignity of the teaching profession and fostering an expectation of teaching as noble work if we are to attract and retain the best and the brightest individuals to teach our young people. We need to continue to invest in training and developing our teachers, instilling in them the same high expectations we have of our students. We need to celebrate and recognize the great work being done by so many dedicated WCSD teachers and staff. They are our families' partners in building healthy, well-educated, responsible future citizens, and they deserve our thanks and support. 

 

Expanding counseling resources

Not only do our kids lack adequate facilities and teachers, they also lack adequate resources for college and career advising and navigating the tricky path to responsible adulthood when parents don't have all the resources they need to help. It often takes weeks for students to see a counselor. Our schools and our children are less safe to the extent that issues like bullying or abusive home lives or conflicts between students aren't dealt with quickly and professionally. As a former high school counselor and volunteer at the Nevada Mental Health Institute, I know firsthand the devastating--and potentially dangerous--effects of unresolved interpersonal issues. The American School Counselor Association recommends one counselor for every 250 students, yet some of our schools have only one counselor for more than 500 students!  These young citizens need additional support to adequately face all the challenges of growing up strong and successful in our complex, modern world. 

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Contribute

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Friends of Katy Simon Holland and mail to:

PO Box 34825

RENO, NV 89533


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Contact

Katy Holland Simon

Info@katy4kids.com   •   775-232-7077

PO Box 34825   Reno, NV 89533

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District G

Paid for by Friends of Katy Simon Holland.