Betty Kuffel

Coming from a family where no one could afford to attend college, my parents worked hard and instilled a strong desire in their children to seek an education. I was the first to attend college in our family and treasured the opportunity.

Some Montanans have excellent public educational opportunities from preschool through college. The Montana state constitution even carries a mandate to develop the full educational potential of each citizen. 

We see this in action with Bozeman, Kalispell Glacier, and Whitefish high schools ranking top three in the state. Unfortunately, these schools still rank well below national standards. Our report card from Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA 2022-23) showed more than half of Montana students lack proficiency in math, reading, and science.

As Montana voters, we have the privilege and responsibility to elect a candidate for Superintendent of Public Instruction who will strive to improve competency in our children and work diligently to correct inadequate funding of public education. We need more teachers and higher salaries, but shortfalls this year required reduction in staffing and teacher hiring.

Shannon O’Brien is running for Superintendent of Public Instruction. Her broad background in education from K-12 to college, and as Dean of Missoula College provides a solid basis of competency for this position.

In addition, she was Governor Bullock’s education policy advisor, and is now a state senator fighting for public schools. Her exemplary skills provide a foundation for the Superintendent position that far out-weigh those of the Republican candidates in the coming Primary.

Vote for the children. Vote for Shannon O’Brien for a strong Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction.