Note: The following information was submitted by the candidate in preparation for the school board election.
Current Board term expires: 11/2021
Responses as of: 09/2013
(1) Your full name: John D. Ogletree, Jr.
(2) Spouse’s name: Evelyn Ogletree
(3) Child(ren) name(s) and age(s): Johnny Ogletree III - 36 ; Lambreni - 35; Joseph - 27; Jordan - 23
(4) Describe your occupation and company: Pastor and Founder, First Metropolitan Church
(5) Subdivision: Copper Lakes Estates
(6) Years lived within CFISD: 21 years
(7) Why did you choose to live in CFISD? As concerned parents, my wife and I searched for a community to raise our children that was safe and offered a quality education program. We also wanted a school system in which she could work and help make a difference in the lives of other children.
(8) Describe your involvement in CFISD (i.e. PTO, district-level committees):
I have served two three-year terms on the Board, as member, Secretary, Vice President and now President. Prior to being elected, I served on several task forces for the district. My wife taught in the district and served as an elementary school counselor. Before my four children graduated, I participated in all their school activities.
(9) Community organizations in which you participate: 2nd Vice President of the Baptist General Convention of Texas; Past Moderator of the Union Baptist Association of Houston; Commissioner for Christian Life Commission of BGCT; Advisor to Mission Houston, and First Metropolitan Church is a member Cy-Fair Serves.
(10) Considering your skills and talents, what positive contribution would you make as a member of the Board of Trustees? I am running because I have the experience, passion and proper motivation to be a board member. I serve for one purpose—quality education for our children in Cypress Fairbanks ISD.
My first contribution as a board member was the most important one—choosing a new superintendent. We choose David Anthony who has been stellar in a rapidly growing district that is underfunded. Each year I have participated in setting yearly goals for the district. I have voted to trim yearly budgets without sacrificing quality education. I have also voted to maintain our district’s homestead exemption as well as provide our employees a raise. Five reasons to vote for me:
1. Passion for children.
2. People focused rather than politically focused.
3. Positive toward our challenges.
4. Progressive toward change.
5. Protector of the homestead exemption.
(11) In your opinion, what are the responsibilities of the Board of Trustees?
Our role is governance, approving budgets, contracts, personnel appointments and setting policy; determine and set educational standards and evaluate their outcome; and last, be an advocate in the community for quality public education.
(12) In your opinion, what critical challenges face the district, and what are possible solutions to address those issues? The first issue is inadequate financing of our district by Austin. We need to be strong advocates for adequate funding from the state and make cuts to our budget without sacrificing quality education. The next issue is maintaining a quality workforce. Quality education cannot take place without quality employees. We must compete with other districts and the private workforce by giving raises and valuing our employees. Another challenge is growth. We must continue to plan and meet the challenges that growth presents.
(13) The state does not fund CFISD at the same level as surrounding districts, which has resulted in budget reductions of nearly $70 million in recent years. Given this information, what are your recommendations for recruiting and retaining quality staff? I recommend that we make it known by word and deed that we are a district that values its employees. We must give raises and incentives when possible. We must make the staff work environment one that encourages creativity, excellence and teamwork, while at the same time making an environment conducive for student achievement