Q&A APS Board District 7 Nicholas Bevins - Albuquerque Journal

Q&A APS Board District 7 Nicholas Bevins

Nicholas Bevins

Name: Nicholas Bevins

Political party: Independent

Age: 25

Education: New Mexico public schools, UNM, and CNM

Occupation: Community activist

Family: I am one of 5 sons…

Relevant experience: At 25-years-old, I will be the only school-board-member to have attended New Mexico public schools throughout the 21st century. I understand how to address cyber bullying, testing culture and online learning because I grew up in it. I bring recent first-hand experience to the table regarding the modern education system.

Campaign website: NicholasForABQ.org

What’s the biggest issue APS faces? How would you address it?

Our 3 biggest issues are the testing culture which needs to be replaced with a model of interest-based learning and life skills, low pay for our staff which needs to be increased by reallocating parts of the budget and utilizing the Land Grant Permanent Fund, and class sizes which need to be cut in half at minimum.

In your opinion, what is the primary role of a school board member?

To empower our students, teachers and support staff by providing them with the resources they need to succeed, the freedom they need to innovate, and the inclusive policies to accommodate everyone.

How would you evaluate the current school board’s performance?

We rank 50th nationwide in education. No further commentary is needed.

What experience do you have overseeing a budget?

Living below the poverty line, one learns to be frugal wherever necessary.

Would you support a vaccine mandate for APS students who are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine? Why or why not?

Yes, because we all have a civil responsibility to ensure the safety of our community. Vaccine requirements have a clear precedent in the United States in general, and in the school system in particular.

What’s your position on mask mandates at schools?

Strongly in favor until the pandemic is thoroughly under control and our vaccination rate is over 90% as a state.

Under what circumstances, if any, would you support a return to remote learning?

Under the recommendation of epidemiologists from the CDC or the New Mexico Department of Health.

Do you think superintendent applications should be public?

Yes, absolutely. We need a much wider pool of candidates than we currently have.

How would you evaluate APS as a whole?

Our teachers, support staff and students are all doing their parts. The administration, however, is utterly incompetent. The allocation of financial resources needs to be shifted away from overhead and redirected toward the classroom.

What’s your stance on charter schools?

At best they are a distraction from addressing the deficiencies in our public education system, at worst they are an attempt to privatize the school system. I am not in favor of allocating tax-payer dollars to charter schools.

APS has been sued numerous times for failing to release public records. What, if anything, would you do to ensure that the school district is adhering to state transparency laws, such as the Inspection of Public Records Act?

All internal documentation, other than that pertaining to the privacy of students and staff, should be made public as a matter of principle.

Personal background

1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state or federal tax liens?

No.

2. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?

No.

3. Have you ever been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of drunken driving, or any misdemeanor or felony?

No.


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