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The student voice of West Potomac High School

The Wire

The student voice of West Potomac High School

The Wire

The student voice of West Potomac High School

The Wire

Zimmerman Vies for Mount Vernon District School Board Seat

The election action moves to the normal voting locations after early voting was held at the Government Center. There are many signs to encourage voters.

It’s finally Election Day in Virginia, though the sheer amount of political promotional signs on Government Center property have been announcing election day for weeks. All the State Delegate and State Senate seats up for grabs–along with all the School Board seats in Fairfax County. Region 3 will select between 2 candidates from the District and 3 At-Large seats.

Here’s a look at the 1 candidates running for the Mount Vernon District’s School Board Representative, Stori Zimmerman, who will represent a total of seventeen elementary schools, 4 middle schools, and 3 high schools including West Potomac High School. The representative will contribute school policies and guidelines, alongside other powers like fund allocation.

See the profile about her competitor, Mateo Dunne, Here.

About Stori Zimmerman

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Stori Zimmerman is self-employed and describes herself as a “mom, educator, and military spouse” on a Candidate Profile from Patch. Zimmerman has a Double Major Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education & Biology, as well as an Art’s Master in Teaching. She has experience in teaching from levels K-12 and a background in coaching.

As the representative of the Mount Vernon District, she would represent a total of seventeen elementary schools, 4 middle schools, and 3 high schools. This includes West Potomac High School. In her role, Zimmerman is expected to act on behalf of the needs of the district. 

“To advocate for teachers and students here in the Mount Vernon district is one of the reasons why I’m running,” Zimmerman said. “But specifically… to make sure that the attention is drawn here as far as the diversity that we have in our student population. We also have some of the more economically diverse areas here in the Mount Vernon district.”

Zimmerman explained that support is a major focus for her. As reflected in her platform, a “world class education” is the ideal goal for the county.

 “When we talk about providing a world class education, it’s not just about performance academically,” Zimmerman described. “We need to make sure that when we are providing a world class education that we’re providing depth and breadth in our educational resources as well.”

Zimmerman’s greatest concern for education in the community is literacy proficiency among students. She pointed out the letter that the Fairfax County branch of the NAACP sent to county officials in April of 2021. In this letter, the NAACP demanded that Fairfax change to a “evidence-based structured literacy methodology”. To achieve the academic excellence Fairfax holds so highly, Zimmerman says the school board needs to ensure that a new literacy curriculum is adopted in all Fairfax County schools.

Academic excellence goes beyond the attainment of high grades. It’s also making sure that our student population —along with our teachers and administrators— have a passion for knowledge and a spirit of inquiry and dedication to continuous improvement.

— Stori Zimmerman

,” Zimmerman explained.

The shortage of teachers across the country is also a concern of Zimmerman’s. 

“I think the advocacy for top pay has been around for the last decade,” Zimmerman said. “And we need to continue to do that. But I think we also need to make sure we have an emphasis on how we cultivate educational leaders from within our own communities.”

She suggested that teachers and administrators should receive resources and stipends that allow them to strengthen their work.

“I think that if we have a community-driven approach— that we not only support our current educators, but we also nurture the talents within.”

Zimmerman pointed out that many expenses in the Fairfax County Schools budget fall under the same label of classroom support. 

“We still have teachers that have to come out of their pocket to buy supplies, and that’s a no go.”

Zimmerman called for a shift in the budgeting system so that the school board is more accountable for where expenses go.

“I would like to see the budget go from a baseline budgeting to a line item budget where everything requires annual justification. That would enhance fiscal accountability…”

Zimmerman wants the school board to be held responsible for its faults, and that’s what fiscal accountability would look like.

“To be able to see that what you are doing isn’t working and being able to pivot so that you can make it work— that’s a great thing.”

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