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  • Writer's pictureTodd McKinley

Kingsport Times-News Questions

Updated: Mar 4

Title: Kingsport Times-News Questions

1. Why do you want to serve or continue to serve on the Sullivan County Board of Education?


There are several reasons, the main one is to serve as a bulwark against bad ideas, especially ones that flow from Washington, DC, and the “Woke” left. Another reason is to ensure that the resources we spend go to producing the best possible graduate, which means better Teacher pay & benefits, basically more money for the classrooms. As I always say, “an educated public is an employable public.” Remember, industry and jobs only move into areas in which the population has a well-rounded education.


2. What in your education, background, and experiences would help you in a four-year term on the school board?


As a retired Army Paratrooper, Senior Noncommissioned Officer, and Afghanistan & Iraq War Veteran, I’m not afraid to fight for the people of this county, and have nearly been killed while serving them.


My education includes a Bachelor of Arts in Homeland Security, a Master of Science Leadership: Global Leadership from Duquesne University, Certificates in Executive Leadership from Cornell University, and Leaders of Learning from Harvard University, and a diploma from Sullivan North High School, as well as dozens of military and technical certifications.


3. What would you like to accomplish and what are your goals if elected?


My main goals are to boost Teacher pay & benefits to compete for the best and brightest, implement a public comment period before spending more than $500K on any project, which includes allocating new funds to ongoing projects, all before naming sports venues after someone. I also want to work to promote public involvement when it comes to their school boards, which will serve to give everyone a voice in public education which is lacking across our nation, especially with many recent members on our county school board.


4. What do you think of Gov. Bill Lee’s plan to expand the school voucher program and the current partisan school board elections versus non-partisan ones in the past?


The Governor’s voucher program will be decided by the State Legislature, not local school boards, but I don’t support it. I think this voucher program will do nothing more than assist those who can basically afford private school which on average in TN costs $20K annually after factoring in transportation cost, which is a nonstarter for most Tennesseans. Remember, vouchers aren’t the same thing as school choice.


I support partisan elections because it allows the voter to know where the candidate lands politically even if they don’t know much about them.

Also, here’s the link to every blog update regarding this campaign.

Todd A. McKinley, BA, MSL




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