Kimberly Keithahn

Name:  Kimberly KeithahnAge:  44How long living in Indian River County:  Five yearsPlace of Birth:  CaliforniaOccupation:  Full Time Mother with 15 years of prior business experience in Human Resources and National Sales ManagementMarital/Family Status:  Married 20 years (and counting) to Tim, mother to Jamie, sophomore at SRHS IB Program and Abby 7th grader at Imagine School South Vero

Please list Civic and Volunteer Leadership Experience including title & position and Organization including dates and locations.

Volunteer Child Care Coordinator,  Calvary Chapel Vero Beach Easter Outreach 2006-2008

Information Officer, Vero Beach National Little League Board  2007-2008

Board Member and various committees, Orchid Isle Estates HOA 2008-2010

Fundraising Member, Sebastian River High Baseball Booster Club 2009-2010

School Board Liaison, Imagine School PTA 2010/11

Carpool Coordinator, Imagine School PTA 2009/10

Room Mom / Library Assistant / Lunch Room Volunteer at various schools since 2000


What issues motivated you to run for this office and what do you hope to accomplish during your term?

I am running for this office because I care about the children of this county.  As a parent of a high school and middle school student, I understand that the quality of the education that our children receive today will directly impact the leadership of our next generation.  Like many citizens in Indian River County, I am very concerned about the financial crisis the District is facing, and believe that the Board should be committed to fund our classrooms and elevate our education standards.  I have been a frequent attendee of IRC School Board meetings and have grown increasingly concerned with the direction our School Board and believe that I can offer a fresh and relevant perspective as a parent, a substitute teacher and a business woman.

If elected, I will focus on the following areas:

1) Address the financial crisis of our District and make sure that we FIRST fund the classroom.  I will not support raising taxes to fix this crisis and will look for ways to reduce ineffective and inefficient programs and administrative costs.

2) Set policies to elevate the level of education of our students and instill in them responsibility and integrity.

3) Improve the communication between the schools, District, Board and the community.

4) Provide support to our charter schools.

The School Board is currently searching for a new Superintendent to replace out-going Dr. Harry La Cava. What qualities would you look for in a viable candidate?

Our next Superintendent may be the most important hiring decision this Board will face over the next five years.  At a minimum, Mr. La Cava’s replacement will need to have:

1)  Outstanding communication skills.

2)  A proven track record in leadership of a school district of similar size.

3)  A positive reputation with teachers and parents.

4)  A verifiable supporter of charter schools.

5) A solid understanding of fiscal responsibility and willingness to eliminate waste in the District to maximize funding to the classroom.

Finally, it would be ideal to find a candidate with experience in a Florida school district.


Voters will be asked to vote yea or nay on Amendment 8, a constitutional amendment pertaining to class size. What is your stance on Amendment 8 and why do you feel that way?

I am very much in support of reducing class room sizes, where practical,  to elevate education delivered to our children.  Therefore, I am in support of Amendment 8, as I believe it is in our children’s best interest.

The current class size amendment that is on the books, has had several unintended consequences that has negatively impacted the children in our District. Probably the biggest issue is that children in our District are now being shuffled in and out of classes to comply with rigid class room size restrictions as school populations change, thereby disrupting a fluid learning schedule and certain student/teacher relationships in the middle of a school year.  This was never the intent of the original amendment, and should be corrected for the sake of our children.

Amendment 8 allows for flexibility in scheduling and  includes a cap, which will achieve the class size limit that was intended by the original Amendment.  We need the BEST learning environment for each of our students and that requires flexibility to have a +/- student flexibility.

Two additional charter schools are asking permission to open in the Indian River County School District. Why do you think charters are interested in the county? What is your stance on charter schools? Do you believe they help or hurt the School District as a whole?

I believe the attraction of charter schools to Indian River County is simply because parents are asking for choice.  Parents have been told for years that educating their children is a “partnership”, and I believe charter parents have taken that partnership to the next level. New charter schools are being attracted to the county because they see a need that they can fulfill.

I’m a firm believer in supporting our charter schools as they create a unique learning environment, offer choice and competition.   I also believe our charter schools benefit the students and the public with their innovative teaching styles, smaller campuses and their cost effective education delivery models.

I believe that charter schools enhance our District as a whole.  In order to increase this benefit, the School District needs to work on strengthening relationships with our charter schools and form a more collaborative relationship.  We must always keep in mind what is best for the student, and for many students it is a charter school.

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