School Board Experience
In 2016, Mister Phillips was overwhelmingly elected to the West Contra Costa School Board. In 2020, he was re-elected without opposition. Read on to learn about his service on the school board.
Mister has been a leader on the school board. Here are some of his assignments on the school board:
- Board president
- Board clerk
- Facilities Committee chairman
- Safety & Climate Committee chairman
- Budget Committee member
- Technology Committee member
- Special Education Committee liaison
- Multilingual District Advisory Committee liaison
Mister has been effective on the school board. Here are some of his accomplishments on the school board:
- Led the process to hire the new superintendent of schools
- Audited school district systems to improve levels of service
- Passed a resolution in support of data driven decision making
- Banned discriminatory school suspensions
- Passed a positive school climate resolution
- Passed a resolution in support of African American student achievement
- Passed a resolution recognizing Indigenous People's Day
- Rebuilt Michelle Obama Elementary School (formerly Wilson)
- Started the process to rebuild Kennedy High School
- Started the process to rebuild Richmond High School
- Opened a new Mandarin school
- Opened a new K-12 on-line school
- Approved a new school of the arts
- Approved a new trade school
- Hosted career fairs for students
- Passed comprehensive charter school reform
- Advocated for educational equity during COVID-19 school closures
- Organized and led study sessions on COVID-19 and schools
- Worked with county officials to secure COVID-19 vaccine for school district employees
- Worked with county officials to open school-based COVID-19 vaccine clinics
- Opened “summer camps” during COVID-19
- Reopened schools 100 % during COVID-19
- Passed vaccine mandates and other measures to keep schools safe and open during COVID-19
Mister has been fiscally responsible on the school board. Here are some of the steps he has taken to get the school district's finances in order:
- Hired a new chief budget officer
- Created a general counsel position to protect the school district and save money on legal fees
- Increased district reserves
- Consistently advocated for a balanced budget
- Voted against unbalanced budgets five times
- Established an Other Post Employment Benefits (OPEB) trust
- Reestablished the Budget Committee
- Established a 7-11 Committee to generate revenue from vacant district properties
- Hired a legislative advocate in Sacramento
- Voted to eliminate redundant positions
- Proposed incentives to reduce employee health and welfare costs
Former President Phillips-
I wanted to write a note of thanks for your service in the role of WCCUSD board president for the last year. I won't bore you with my own drama and challenges. Suffice it to say: when I realized my kindergartener may never go to a brick and mortar school building, I began to listen to every board meeting from Jan 2020 moving forward. Thus, I had only ever known your board leadership. And I was very thankful for your steady hand.
You took the time to invite national public health experts, state education authorities, engineers working on improving ventilation, and local area leaders (I was especially moved by the presentation from Marin City). All spoke about how we could and should safely reopen school. Despite your leadership. Despite the numerous educational and public health experts who implored us to reopen, the board stubbornly refused for so long until they didn't. Until we got a vote to commit to a soft reopening.
And while my family couldn't really make use of 2 hours a day 2 days a week, we were thankful that in the end last spring, the schools did reopen. And it wasn't the tragedy that some projected. On the contrary, it was a powerfully important step for kids who needed that connection with their teachers and their peers.
I will never forget that night I stayed up until almost 2 AM listening to you explain to the board the difference in the use of the language WCCUSD intends to fully reopen in Fall 2021 versus WCCUSD WILL REOPEN in Fall 2021. We have your leadership to thank for that. You made that happen. You served my child, our family, and our community so well that night. And the safely reopened schools this fall have made such a huge impact on my family and our neighborhood. My child is truly living her best first grade life! Her school and her brand spanking new teacher beat the pants off of Zoom and doom!
So thank you, sir. You made a big difference in my life. You have lowered the levels of cortisol in my bloodstream. And you know what they say, you don't know how much you will miss someone until they are gone, I already miss your leadership!
On this MLK Day, I just wanted to take a few minutes to thank you for your service to our community.
In gratitude and community-