Tacoma School Board incumbent Scott Heinze announced this week that he will seek a second six-year term on the board.
Heinze was elected in 2011, defeating three other candidates in a primary race and winning a tight race in the November general election.
All Tacoma board members run as at-large candidates, representing the entire school district. Heinze currently occupies the board’s Position 3.
He is deputy director of the Pierce County Department of Emergency Management.
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In a news release, Heinze pointed to progress that Tacoma Public Schools has made over the past six years — such as an increased graduation rate — but added that there’s more work to do.
In 2010, the district’s graduation rate hovered at about 55 percent. By 2016, it had risen to 85 percent.
“The past six years have been an incredible journey,” Heinze said in the release. “The 2010 graduation rates and overall performance of the school district, and a belief that we could do better was what motivated me to run for the Tacoma School Board in 2011.”
Now, Heinze says, his top priorities during a second term include increasing partnerships with community groups and developing apprenticeship opportunities for students.
Heinze said he’s inspired by the school district’s accomplishments: “Believing that kids are more than just a score on a high-stakes standardized test, we adopted a multiple-measures accountability system and the Tacoma Whole Child Initiative to ensure kids’ academic and social and emotional learning needs are addressed.”
Heinze and his wife, Amy, a former teacher, have lived in Tacoma since 2003. They have three children who attend Tacoma Public Schools.