Chris North. Photo by Andy Sevilla.
By BILL PETERSON
Chris North has lived in San Marcos for 16 years and lists being “a single mom raising three great kids” as her primary occupation. However, she is every bit as well known around San Marcos for her activism, particularly concerning environmental issues. North founded the San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance, for which she now is the grants coordinator, and she is a member of the Hays County parks board. North has served on more than a dozen local board and commissions, including the city planning and zoning commission.
Newstreamz interviewed North, 45, at The Coffee Pot on the downtown square.
Where do you live and how long have you lived there?
I moved to San Marcos 16 years ago. I have lived in my house on Prospect Street for 15 years.
Do you have children?
I have three children. Hayley is 17, a junior at the high school. Madeline is 11 and in the fifth grade at Hernandez. And Henry is seven and in the first grade at Crockett.
If your children were blessed with children of their own and they lived here, would you recommend that their children attend schools here in the San Marcos CISD?
Because I think our schools are pretty good and I believe in the public system and I think that my children are going to be great parents who will put the time to make sure that my grandkids get a great education, no matter where they go to school.
What is your educational background?
I received my GED in 1984, went to Austin Community College for a couple years, took child development, then moved to Minnesota, got married and had kids.
What do you know about the San Marcos school system?
I know that we’re a medium sized to small school district with excellent, brand new facilities and some great teachers. And I know that the school district has a perception problem that is partly unwarranted. What I don’t know about the school district is more than I know about the school district. That’s why I’m running. I want to advocate for transparency and inclusion for parents and teachers with the administration.
How many students are in the San Marcos CISD?
How about 7,500.
How many teachers are in the San Marcos CISD?
I have no idea.
What is the annual budget of the San Marcos CISD?
I don’t know.
Where do the weaknesses in the school board lie?
Again, I go back to transparency and accountability. I think the school board could do a lot better with engaging with parents and teachers in the decision making process and making meetings more accessible.
What would you like to say to our readers?
What I’d like to say to the readers is that I think I can do this job. I think I’ll be good at it. I’m doing it for the right reasons. I’m doing it for my kids and your kids, and I believe that a strong, excellent school district is critical to good economic development and growth, and they’re all connected. I want the town to grow in a healthy way, and I think being on the school board is one way to help with that. And I think my record of volunteerism in the community illustrates that I know how to get things done.
You have been civically minded. You have served as the president of the San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance and served a term on the Planning and Zoning commission. Why are you running for the school board now?
I saw an opportunity to help. I see a challenge and it would be something new to work on, and I have 11 more years in this school district with my son being in the first grade. And I want to make it better.Email | Print