$300MM Annually 26,000 Students 24 Candidates, 19 Questions

On Tuesday, November 2, Scott County Iowa voters have the responsibility of electing the school board directors in the districts in which they live. In the Bettendorf, Davenport, North Scott, and Pleasant Valley districts there are challengers running against incumbents. And there are two write-in candidates declared in the Davenport district.

This election cycle, in each of these four districts, there are three seats up for grabs amongst a seven-member board. These elected directors will serve for four years. While these positions are voluntary and non-paid, they are collectively responsible, in part, collectively, for more than 300 million dollars of annual spending that provides the education for more than 25,000 students annually.

Most candidates run on their electability driven by their professional experience and/or vested interest in the district's governance because they have school-age children inside the system. While these are important attributes for said leadership, a grasp of the monumental issues facing our public school institutions is also a measure of one's qualifications to serve.

To that end, the following candidate survey invitation was sent to the 24 candidates on the ballot for the four school boards in Scott County, Iowa. We are publishing the contact information publicly available at the Scott County Auditors Web site for each candidate and the respective answers for those that participated.

Only Analicia Gomes and Melissa Zumdome, both challengers, responded to the questions for the Bettendorf School Board race. For the Davenport School Board, only the challengers Farrah Powell and two write in candidates Hannah Doyle and James Quinn responded. None of the incumbent candidates responded to the questionnaire. All candidates were e-mailed twice and were followed up by phone by the publisher to ensure the questionnaire was received.

Greetings School Board Candidates,
Thank you for engaging in one of the most important and under-recognized public office elections.
School Board Directors govern the policies, curriculum, and fiscal oversight at our public schools. These great responsibilities have substantial and critical impact upon our students' education in their most formative years.
Our school boards' leadership and decision-making not only have immediate consequences for families with school-age children, but also have long-lasting impact for our region's economic vitality.
Below are 19 questions we invite you to review and answer in the spirit of full transparency and fostering a fully informed electorate. Undoubtedly, the last 18 months have brought into strong relief numerous controversial and challenging issues that current and future school board members will continue to deal with. Your participation is greatly appreciated.


1) Have you researched, sourced and read the School District's Discrimination or Non-Discrimination policies?

(Bettendorf Challengers)

Analicia Gomes: Yes

Melissa Zumdome: Yes

(Davenport Challengers)

Farrah Powell: No, I was not aware a Policy involving discrimination of any kind would change. To my knowledge it is the same across all platforms, as identified in question 2.
James Quinn: I have read the policies on the district website.

Hannah Doyle: Yes.


2) When it comes to the School District's governance policies, do you consider a District policy that identifies any staff member's employment status, or student's classroom participation status, based on one's skin color, gender identity, physical attributes, disability(s), sexual preference, or religious affiliation to be discriminatory?

Analicia Gomes: Yes

Melissa Zumdome: The current policy of the Bettendorf Community School District (Code No. 102.E1) is not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (for employment), marital status (for programs), sexual orientation, gender identity and socioeconomic status (for programs) in its educational programs and its employment practices. For more information in regards to the current Bettendorf School District board policies please visit Bettendorf.k12.ia.us/board/policies

Farrah Powell:Yes, those are all discriminatory if utilized to make a decision or if considered for any reason.

James Quinn: Absolutely, yes.

Hannah Doyle: Yes.


3) If your answer to question 2 above is “No,” under what circumstances is such a policy not discriminatory and why?

(None apply.)


4) If your answer to question 2 above is “Yes,” what is your position on a District policy, whether permanent or temporary, that determines a staffer's status for employment, or student's classroom participation, based on one's personal medical circumstances, such as opting not to wear a facial covering (mask) or declining to be vaccinated with a COVID-19 mRNA injection or booster injection?

Analicia Gomes: According to House Bill 889 section 27b.2 (introduced on 5/20/2021) no mandates on vaccination status are legal on government properties at this time. Therefore, no policy shall be introduced at the district level that contradicts state law.

Melissa Zumdome: As of May 2021, with the approval of Governor Kim Reynolds, The House Filed 889, an Act prohibiting the mandatory disclosure of whether a person has received a vaccination for COVlD-19, disqualifying certain entities from receiving state grants or contracts, and including effective date provisions. I recommend the schools do not implement any policy that would require a screening for one’s vaccine status.

Farrah Powell: I am not in support of anyone's employment being jeopardized, there needs to be an alternate solution or complete exemption.

James Quinn: Regarding employment it is the employee’s personal choice to make any medical decisions for themselves and determine the extent of their ability to comply with any requirement of the employer. Any forced medical procedure, such as wearing a mask, is discriminatory. As regards our kids, the parent/legal guardian(s) of each child is SOLELY responsible for ALL medical decisions for their child. The current school board’s intrusion into this area is discriminatory against parents and students in mandating a medical procedure.

Hannah Doyle: The schools are here to provide free, public education. We have children in our district that struggle with basics such as safety, food and shelter. I do not believe it is in their, or any student’s best interest to be concerned with facial coverings or vaccines. The children are in school to learn; teachers and staff are there to teach and provide a safe environment. To remove a child or staff member from school and refuse education or employment is absolutely discrimination. We can either have equality for everyone or equality for no one. We cannot pick and choose what we want to qualify as discrimination. As it stands, over the last few weeks we have seen a new kind of discrimination and furthermore, segregation of our students for their decision to decline a medical device (facial covering.) This has been an extreme disservice to our students, disrupting their education and a failure in upholding the mission statement of the DCSD.


5) If your answer to question 2 above is “Yes,” why is it acceptable and/or legal to discriminate based on one criteria, but not upon another?

Analicia Gomes: It is not acceptable, by any means, for any student or employee to be discriminated against on the basis of the identifiers listed in question number 2.

Melissa Zumdome: It is not acceptable.

Farrah Powell: N/A

James Quinn: It is NOT ever acceptable.

Hannah Doyle:  As stated before, we either have equality for all or equality for none. There is no in between. One cannot rightfully say, I won’t discriminate against a student because they are of a different race, but I will should they refuse a medical device to be placed on their body. 


6) Based on what you have researched and/or observed personally, what is the actual risk to students under 18 years of age of serious illness, hospitalization, or dying from COVID-19?

Analicia Gomes: I am a strong advocate for effective research and trusting many different experts in their fields. I recently came across an article by the Academy of Pediatrics entitled: Children and COVID-19 State-Level Data Report last updated on 9/27/2021 which states, “at this time, it appears that severe illness due to COVID-19 is uncommon among children.” article link: AAP.org/en/pages/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19-infections/children-and-covid-19-state-level-data-report/

Melissa Zumdome: American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children Hospital published an online article, version 9.23.21. AAP.org/AAP/PDF/AAP%20and%20CHA%20-%20Children%20and%20COVID-19%20State%20Data%20Report%209.23%20FINAL.pdf Hospitalizations: Among states reporting, children ranged from 1.6%-4.1% of their total cumulated hospitalizations, and 0.1%-2.0% of all their child COVID-19 cases resulted in hospitalization. Mortality: Among states reporting, children were 0.00%-0.27% of all COVID-19 deaths, and 7 states reported zero child deaths. In states reporting, 0.00%-0.03% of all child COVID-19 cases resulted in death.

Farrah Powell: COVID-19 can be a risk to anyone at any age, especially when underlying health issues are evident.

James Quinn: The risk to youth of serious illness or hospitalization has been shown over and over to be far less than that experienced by an older population. The mortality rate for students with COVID-19 is something like .03%. That being said, 1 death of a child is too many and effective measures should be put in place to address our children’s safety. Unfortunately the school board has chosen to focus on a proven ineffective method and deny our kids a safe educational environment.

Hannah Doyle:  Directly from the CDC: Since January 2020, there have been 387 deaths related to COVID-19 in children ages 5-18. 387 deaths in the entire United States. In my opinion, based on the statistics provided by the CDC, COVID-19 does not pose a great risk to the population of students attending school. Certainly not enough risk to resort to online schooling, use of medical devices (facial coverings) and emergency use vaccinations.  If thousands of people can gather in college football stadiums and cheer on their favorite teams, our students can safely go to class without mask mandates.


7) Based on your research, do you believe it is an effective mitigation to require all people on District grounds to wear a facial covering or mask against the transmission/spread and subsequent infection from COVID-19?

Analicia Gomes: As a border community to an enforced mask mandate in Illinois, we can see that requiring masks has not stopped transmission among the students and staff. Subsequently, their transmission levels are very similar if not higher than current positivity rates in Bettendorf Community School District where no state level mandate is present.

Melissa Zumdome: No. I believe it should be the parent’s choice to decide what is best for their child’s health care needs. In regards to everyone else in the District, I feel they are capable of making their own healthcare decisions.

Farrah Powell: This question for me is adult visitor based. I feel social distancing is important for adults regardless of spread levels. As a kid my mom would correct me if I stood too closely to people, such as the grocery store line and I've taught my children to also give people space. Visitors inside of the school should wear masks just because they have the potential of exposing a greater number of people at one time, as long as the data supports the threat.

James Quinn: Absolutely not. The school claims to follow the “CDC guidelines”. However these are just that, guidelines. While the CDC mentions masks in their guidelines they do not clearly define what a mask is. This is left to the regulatory arm of the FDA which is very clear in stating the types of masks used by our school district are completely and totally ineffective in affecting any transmission of the COVID-19 virus.

Hannah Doyle:  Considering we managed to make it 6 weeks into the school year with no mandates, I never received one call or notification regarding COVID-19 exposure to my son, I can confidently say the only effect this mandate is having is lowering the quality of education our students are receiving. Our students and teachers are now more concentrated on wearing masks, or having to correct students to wear their mask than they are on teaching and learning. We’ve had students segregated into rooms, having their education WITHHELD from them because they wouldn’t wear a mask. Students are running through hallways, dodging into bathrooms to avoid teachers that are attempting to enforce this unnecessary mandate. This is not quality education. I cannot comprehend the drive to add more roadblocks to our students' education.  Being able to say "no" is, in my opinion, the epitome of freedom. This mandate is teaching our young and impressionable minds that they do not have the power to say "no" in regards to their bodies. Parents and children should have the right to choose.


8) If your answer to question 7 above is “Yes,” please provide your sources supporting this universal masking on District grounds, especially research sources, other than CDC guidelines, for masking children.

Alicia Gomes: N/A

Melisssa Zumdome: N/A

Farrah Powell: I've researched this and have been unable to find the supporting evidence of the effect on children without existing underlying health issues. I'm not saying it doesn't exist, just that I was not able to easily locate it, please keep in mind several entities have restricted such information. My answer to #7 was based on adults, I feel if adults are able that would be the better start. I would also like to see a better option for the parents that are having issues with wearing a mask, without compromising their lives.

James Quinn: N/A

Hannah Doyle:  N/A 


9) Does the School Board have the authority and autonomy to not follow CDC guidelines, despite any directives otherwise from a state or federal government branch?

Alicia Gomes: According to an education article, although school boards are allowed some autonomy and authority, they are still required to work in conjunction with state legislatures, federal government and state boards to make policy decisions that affect their district. Article referenced: Education.stateuniversity.com/pages/2391/School-Boards.html

Melissa Zumdome: YES. Local educational agencies (LEA’s), such as public school districts are not considered employers under the OSH Act and thus are not subject to OSHA’s federal regulation, inspection, or enforcement. However, they may be covered by OSHA-approved state plans (Information sourced from CRSReports.congress.gov | IF11619 · VERSION 2)

Farrah Powell: I'm not sure. I want to say yes and I'm sure there will be serious repercussions behind it.

James Quinn: As I’ve said, the guidelines are GUIDELINES. They are not laws, they are not regulations, they are suggestions. So yes, the school board has every authority and responsibility to carefully weigh all input from various sources in determining an effective course of action.

Hannah Doyle:   Guidelines are just that, guidelines. They are not laws, they are suggestions. Any school, business or organization absolutely has the authority to disregard any given guidelines. Furthermore, our state leadership fully supports freedom to choose what is best for each individual family. 


10) Federal and state legislatures, in cooperation with state education departments, have appropriated COVID relief funding nationwide, which is then allocated to individual schools through the School Districts. What conditions must be met for the school district's grant eligibility that would otherwise be forfeit if not complied with? For example, COVID mitigation policies that include masking, distancing, and vaccinating.

Analicia Gomes: A guidance was released by the Iowa Department of Education and revised on May 11, 2021 stating that: “All Iowa districts submitted a compliant Return-to-Learn Plan by July 1, 2020 that meets the requirements of ARP Act for the ‘safe return to in-person instruction and continuity of services.’ All Iowa districts also used the materials provided by the Department on garnering public input on Return-to-Learn Plans. The Department presumes that all Iowa districts are in compliance with this requirement of ARP Act at Iowa Department of Education guidance should be viewed as advisory unless it's specifically authorized by state statute, according to Iowa Code section 256.9A. This does not apply to administrative rules, declaratory orders, or materials required by federal law or courts. Page | 4 this time. If further information is needed as USED releases requirements for the ARP ESSER III Plan, we will provide updated guidance.” Bettendorf’s return to learn protocol aforementioned can be found here: Bettendorf.k12.ia.us/application/files/7616/2929/5049/2021-2022_BCSD_Parent-Guardian_COVID_Protocols_8-18-21.docx.pdf

Melissa Zumdome: The American Rescue Plan offers different levels of funding for many LEA’s (Local Educational agencies). At least 20 percent of funds must be used to address learning loss through the implementation of evidence- based interventions. The remaining funds may be used for a wide range of activities, for example planning and implementing activities related to summer learning and supplemental after-school programs. For the entire list of ways the funds may be used visit OESE.ed.gov/files/2021/03/FINAL_ARP-ESSER-FACT-SHEET.pdf

Farrah Powell: The details I found on the most recent COVID Relief did not have qualifiers, it explained the details behind how much each school would get based on school size. There were some very interesting limitations on what the money could be spent on that I found to be interesting.

James Quinn: See below.

Hannah Doyle:  In order to be eligible for SAFE grant funding a school must adopt one or more strategies congruent with CDC guidelines. These strategies include: Promoting vaccination, consistent and correct mask use, physical distancing, screening testing to promptly identify an outbreak, ventilation, hand washing and respiratory etiquette, staying home when sick and getting tested, contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine, cleaning and disinfecting.  In order to be considered for grant funding, a school must have, or will incur a fine for penalty from its SEA or other state entity. These fines include but are not limited to, school board, administrative or superintendent pay cuts, loss of wages for other staff, etc.  in order to receive grant funding, a school must prove to continue adopting CDC protocol despite any incurred fines or penalties. 


11) What is the dollar amount of COVID Relief funding that has been awarded to your school district via grants and all other other sources, including federal, state, non-governmental and private sources, and how much of that funding has actually been received to date?

Analicia Gomes: After reading multiple Bettendorf School Board minutes to see where stakeholders were told the amount of additional funding received with COVID Relief funding to no resolve, I began to research other entities for such information. In January 2021, the Iowa Department of Education advised constituents of receiving almost $345million in federal relief for Pk-12 schools. According to an article released by SiouxlandProud.com, Bettendorf School District was said to have received $1,683,175.00 within the 2021 round of federal grant assistance. In addition, grant history can be found on the district website at: Foundation.bettendorf.k12.ia.us/grants/grant-history however, specific dollar amounts as well as new grants beyond 2019-2020 have not been updated or made readily available.

Melissa Zumdome: The Iowa Department of Education provided Iowa School Districts PK-12, 3 different State Emergency Relief Packages. On July 2021 the Bettendorf School District Leadership released a letter to all BCSD Families seeking feedback in regards to the use of the remaining funds available to our district through the American Rescue Plan, which included Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds. For more information in regards to this specific news release Bettendorf.k12.ia.us/our-district/news/2021/07/full-time-remote-learning-21-22-esser-iii-funding)

The amount of funding that was allocated to each School District in regards to ESSER III Funding is available on the Iowa Department of Education. EducateIowa.gov/documents/pk-12/2021/06/arp-act- esser-iii-allocations.

Farrah Powell: I'm not sure, there have been 3 different grants so far.

James Quinn: See below.

Hannah Doyle: As of September 10th, 2021, DCSD has received $74,996,122 from the SAFE grant funding. To the best of my knowledge based on public statements, the funding has been received.  


12) What has the School District used the COVID-relief funds for to date, and has any of the funding gone to payroll expenses, including future obligations such as pensions and benefits?

Analicia Gomes: My research shows that Iowa may use up to 0.5% of its total ESSER III allocation for administrative costs and emergency needs as determined by the Department to address issues related to COVID-19. I am currently waiting on a response in regard to this specific question after leaving multiple voicemails with administration.

Melissa Zumdome: I feel this would be best answered by the Director of Finance, Brie Collier.

Farrah Powell: Again, that is something I would like to analyze.

James Quinn: See below.

Hannah Doyle:  In his only public statement, Superintendent Schneckloth has assured the community the funds will be “used with great intention, with the student being the driving concern.” There have been no other public statements in regards to use of these funds to my knowledge. 


13) What is the percentage of COVID-relief dollars spent on administration versus student needs, including teacher support?

Analicia Gomes: Gain, as stated above, 0.5% of total grant funds may be used for administrative costs. As I mentioned above, I am still awaiting a response from our administration.

Melissa Zumdome: Once again, I feel this would be best answered by the Director of Finance, Brie Collier.

Farrah Powell: Again, that is something I would like to analyze.

James Quinn: The nature of any “conditions” regarding specialized “covid funding” and how that funding is used is one our campaign is vigorously researching and at this time I am not able to give a complete answer to these questions.

Hannah Doyle:  Unknown, the most recent finance report posted on the DCSD webpage is April 2020. The last comprehensive report posted is from June 2020. 


14) Do you support Social Emotional Learning (SEL) programs such as Critical Race Theory (CRT), 1619 Project, as part of your School District's curriculum?

Analicia Gomes: On June 8, 2021 House File 802 was approved by Governor Kim Reynolds blocking such curriculum in Iowa elementary thru postsecondary schools. House Bill 802: Legis.iowa.gov/legislation/BillBook?ba=HF%20802&ga=89

Melissa Zumdome: No, I do not support Critical Race Theory. I believe a course such as this should only be available as an elective at the college level.

Farrah Powell: Yes.

James Quinn: No I do not.

Hannah Doyle:  I absolutely do not support these curricula in our school.


15) If your answer to question 14 above is “Yes,” why? And, what are the stated goals of such SEL programs, including the specific targeted outcomes for individual students who complete SEL programs in CRT, gender identity, and sexual behaviors, as applied in elementary, middle school, and high school curriculums? If your answer is “No,” why not?

Analicia Gomes: Governor Reynolds commented on House Bill 802 saying, “Critical Race Theory is about labels and stereotypes, not education. It teaches kids that we should judge others based on race, gender or sexual identity, rather than the content of someone’s character,” according to an article written by Erin Murphy of Des Moines on June 8, 2021 to which I concur this curriculum does not belong in our elementary and secondary schools. Erin Murphy’s article available here: QCTimes.com/article_4bc8cfc9-9b71-541b-954c-64ba7b0f9eab.html.

Melissa Zumdome: I strongly agree with Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds on this topic. “Critical Race Theory is about labels and stereotypes, not education. It teaches kids that we should judge others based on race, gender or sexual identity, rather than the content of someone’s character,” Reynolds said in a statement from the Des Moines Register. (Information sourced at DesMoinesRegister.com/story/news/politics/2021/06/08/governor-kim-reynolds-signs-law-targeting-critical-race-theory-iowa-schools-diversity-training/7489896002/ - We need to get back to the basics and focus on improving our current curriculum.

Farrah Powell: I am from a diverse background and there is not enough curriculum in regards to a multitude of cultures that I feel are needed. It gives an understanding of where you are from and mistakes made all over society that we don't ever want to repeat. I do think this is something for upper grade students, our kids need help understanding and navigating what so many of us parents still struggle with.

James Quinn: The problem with programs such as these is their advocates’ insistence on propagating an ideology disguised as history. The main focus in CRT is that racism is, by its nature, systemic. If this be true then, in their eyes, a complete destruction of a corrupt society is the only way to eradicate racism. Not only is this a radical solution to a problem but CRT also invariably hampers our students’ self-esteem and self-determination through prejudice and guilt.

Hannah Doyle:  I would and will never subscribe to anything that teaches my mixed race son that he is oppressed by his fully Caucasian little sister. Curriculum such as these are based in Marxism, attempt to rewrite our history, and further manufacture a divide in our country. We can and should continue to address any hint of racism in our world. We can accomplish that by teaching our very own history exactly as it happened. My opinion on this is again, based in equality and non discrimination. We cannot survive by continuously telling half our children they are oppressed by the other half. 


16) Iowa Core, also known as Common Core, are the legislated student educational standards currently in place. Please describe what you understand the specific benefits and/or failures are that have accrued to students over the past decade fro Iowa Core implementation.

Analicia Gomes: Statistically, our current teaching standards in BCSD have lowered our Iowa AP Index from 11th place ten years ago to 29th as of 2019. As a former teacher, I believe we should always look for the best methods that promote learning for all students.

Melisssa Zumdome: I don’t agree with Common Core because I believe students should he taught the most efficient way to do Math; however, I would reach out to teachers in the school district, to better understand their point of view in regards to the effectiveness of common core for student’s learning outcomes. Those are the voices that matter in regards to this topic.

Farrah Powell: I'm aware of the Common Core, but not sure of the data surrounding it over the last decade.

James Quinn: Common Core is inherently flawed. This bureaucratic laden top down approach to learning fails to address the curiosity in a child that sparks learning and instead chooses to present subjects in a cut-up, often unrelated context. Additionally, the emphasis on test scores most likely results in teachers teaching to the test rather than to the subject matter. Finally, while Common Core does make adjustments to its curriculum for those with IEPs, little accommodation is given to this same population, and others, when it comes to the actual testing.

Hannah Doyle:  I am unaware of any outstanding benefits of mandating all schools use the same curriculum. I can understand the draw of having the same plan for education, but when all schools are required to teach from a certain platform, we miss the unique opportunities that are provided with a choice in education. I believe the requirements to maintain a “core” holds back our students that excel in many areas and presents an unnecessary challenge to those with learning disabilities. 


17) Do you support increased interaction and collaboration between the School Board with parents and the community, including increased transparency such as disclosure of all curriculums, materials, budgets, and policy-making? Why or why not?

Analica Gomes: Absolutely, I believe collaboration with community members in full transparency is vital to promoting the most positive outcome for our students and our district as a whole.

Melissa Zumdome: Yes, I believe this is always up for discussion.

Farrah Powell: One of the biggest things I would like to focus on is interaction and relationships between Teachers, Students, Parents, the SB and Administration. Yes, a certain amount of transparency is important, meaning some things need a level of understanding, some dialogue when it comes to important issues and other issues may need an alternative option as needed.

James Quinn: My primary purpose in running in this campaign is to eliminate the immoral and illegal mandate instituted by the school board. This issue stands clear as having been brought about through an arrogant refusal to work with the parents of the district. This board’s actions have shown they have little interest in the opinions, advice or criticisms of those who have elected them to office. Communication is not just a good idea, it is required if we are to advance this district rather than spend all our resources putting out all the little fires sparked by this indifference.

Hannah Doyle:  Yes. The only way to keep leadership accountable for their actions or inactions is to create and maintain a high level of communication and transparency. As it stands, Every decision, financial breakdown and detail should be available for public knowledge. The parents have a right to know how grant funds and tax dollars are being allocated.  This information should be public as soon as decisions are made and money is allocated. Parents should be made aware of any and all curriculum changes immediately. Parents have the right to know exactly what their students are learning. Especially when sensitive subjects are being taught, such as political science, sociology and heath/reproductive learning. 


18) Overall, pertaining to the District's budget, what is the ratio of expenditures between administration, teachers and students?

Analicia Gomes: These numbers have not been made public at this time.

Melissa Zumdome: In regards to finance concerns and questions, I would follow up with the BCSD Director of Finance, Brie Collier.

Farrah Powell: As mentioned prior this is something I have great interest in, allocation!

James Quinn: I am not able to answer this question at this time.

Hannah Doyle:  As best I can gather from the 2020 comprehensive budget report dividing just the dollars budgeted for instruction/support services, administration and non instructional/other the breakdown is as follows:  86% to Instruction and support services, 10% to administration, 3% to non instructional and other services 


19) What is the teacher union's role in the governance of the School District, and what is the School Board's obligations to that union(s), especially as such obligations may impact students?

Analicia Gomes: A teacher union’s role in the governance of the BCSD is to be a bargaining agent for their members when contractual agreements between the school board and the union are up for negotiations. They then work in tandem with the board to retain and provide the best possible candidates for employment to support the common goal of providing an exceptional education for all of our students.

Melissa Zumdome: To keep this simple, the teacher’s union (Iowa State Education Association) purpose is to support the teachers, not to govern the school.

Farrah Powell: The Union has a job to be a voice for Teachers and advocate the needs of the whole. The Board members are obligated to work directly with the Union for collective bargaining purposes and implementing policies.

James Quinn: As I have not read the most recent contract between the teacher’s union and the school board, I really can’t comment on any conditions therein. However, any obligations, whether on the part of the school board or the teacher’s union, must ALWAYS yield to the health and welfare of our kids.

Hannah Doyle:  There is no reporting relationship between the teachers’ union and the school board or school district. The teachers union collects dues from teachers, and in return represents each member in regards to salary and working conditions.  Many states’ teachers unions took it upon themselves to decide when schools would open and begin in class learning. Some even made demands such as defunding police, raising state taxes and imposing a moratorium on charter schools. Fortunately, Iowa state Governor Reynolds passed legislation that required all public schools to offer 5 day per week in class learning. Based on the failure rate statistics, I believe it was quite necessary. In my very own home, there was relief. Within two weeks my son’s grades went from Fs to CS, and he eventually graduated 8th grade with second honors.  It is important to note that since the change in the collective bargaining law in 2017 the only involvement of the unions in regards to teachers’ contract is of teachers’ salaries. 


2021 Scott County School Board Candidates

Note: “(I)” indicates an incumbent candidate, currently serving.

Bettendorf Community School District School Board Director

(Vote for no more than three)


Davenport Community School District School Board Director

(Vote for no more than three)

  • Bruce Potts (I) 2813 Fairhaven Rd • Davenport, IA 52803 (563)320-3628 • brucejpotts@gmail.com

  • Farrah N Powell 2027 Jebens Ave • Davenport, IA 52804 (563)349-6444 • farrah.powell21@gmail.com

  • Karen Gordon 1727 Fernwood Ave • Davenport, IA 52803 (563)508-2802 • klh_gordon@yahoo.com

  • Allison Beck (I) 109 Essex Lane • Davenport, IA 52803 (563)528-4441 • allisonlbeck@gmail.com

  • James Quinn (write-in candidate) 3536 W. 29th St • Davenport, IA 52804 (309) 550-6132 • jquinn3922@gmail.com

  • Hannah Doyle (write-in candidate)  2636 W 56th St • Davenport, 52806 (563) 343-2117 • hcastor1990@gmail.com 

North Scott Community School District School Board Director

(Vote for no more than three)


Pleasant Valley Community School District School Board Director District 1

(Vote for no more than one)


Pleasant Valley Community School District School Board Director District 2

(Vote for no more than one)


Pleasant Valley Community School District School Board Director District 7

(Vote for no more than one)

Bettendorf School Board Social & Public Forum October 14

The Bettendorf Community School Board Candidate Forum will be held at 6 p.m. on October 14 at the Bettendorf High School Performing Arts Center, 3333 18th Street. A “candidate social” with the public will be held from 5 to 5:45 p.m. in the Bettendorf High School Commons. The local NBC affiliate KWQC is moderating this event and will air it live on all of their platforms. KWQC's Web site reads: “Anyone who would like to submit a question for consideration to be asked can e-mail news@kwqc.com and put 'Bettendorf School Board Forum' in the subject line.”

Davenport School Board Public Forums October 19 & 23

The first Davenport school board candidate forums will be held at 7 p.m. on October 19 in the Jim Hester Board Room, second floor of the Davenport Schools Achievement Service Center at 1702 N. Main Street and is hosted by the Davenport Community School District. The local NBC affiliate KWQC is moderating this event and will air it live on all of their platforms. KWQC's Web site reads, “Anyone who would like to submit a question for consideration to be asked can e-mail news@kwqc.com and put 'Davenport School Board Forum' in the subject line. People attending the forum also can write questions on note cards that will be submitted to the moderator for consideration.” The second Davenport candidate forum will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 23, at the Davenport Public Library, 6000 Eastern Avenue.

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