Civic Association Newsletter

October/November 1997 - Volume 21, No. 1


For the first panel, for the Ballston-Virginia Square Civic Association's (BVSCA's) Candidates Night meeting on Wednesday, October 29, 1997, at 7:30 p.m., at the Fairfax/Wilson/Glebe Room, Holiday Inn at Ballston, 4610 North Fairfax Drive, Arlington, Virginia, we will hear from the two candidates for the Arlington County School Board--Elaine Furlow and Ric Roca. The following background information was provided by the candidates at the Association's request to assist you in learning more about the candidates and their views. The Association asked that the candidate responses be limited to 500 words or less.

Statement of Elaine S. Furlow (I)

Candidate for Arlington School Board

For nine years, I have worked county-wide on higher standards, greater accountability, budgets that work. I led the way on effective use of technology, and pushed for better communication from schools to parents. I worked for full-day kindergarten, lobbied to save middle school sports, helped to put the International Baccalaureate program at Washington-Lee. I seek out and listen to people on what needs to be done; come up with creative, workable ideas; and build coalitions to make it happen.

On Sept. 10, my supporters and I walked the 7-mile length of Arlington along Glebe Road, engaging people face-to-face at businesses, schools and homes to reconnect the public with our public schools.

I have focused on these issues:

High academic performance

All children should get an appropriate level of challenge, including the "kids in the middle" who may "coast by." I encourage early assessment; more challenging courses; increased summer school; after-school tutoring, especially for non-English speakers; and more business partners who "adopt" a school with low reading and math scores.


The construction program requires improved planning and management, including enough trained staff to supervise projects and better communication.

I also have pushed for budget accountability, proposing a sunset provision for new projects, better evaluation, and a link from the Strategic Plan to the budget. I will work to revise the evaluation system for principals and teachers.


To relieve South Arlington elementary school crowding, I have pressed to renovate Hoffman-Boston and add classrooms; add classrooms at Claremont and Drew; and work toward a new school site at the west end of Columbia Pike. For middle schools, I have encouraged creative options such as reclaiming space for school use (for example, Madison, now used for county programs).


I will continue working toward better communication from the school system and individual schools to parents and the community, including a client-centered perspective. I will continue exploring with parents why they have left public schools, and will strengthen communication with prospective parents.

Effective use of technology

I will continue to push for better planning and maintenance of LANs and Internet connections, plus emphasizing technology to make learning more effective, from probeware in science to CD-ROMs in French class. More staff development is critical.

Biographical sketch

Furlow is Associate Editor, Multimedia Schools. Her community leadership roles include President of the Arlington County Council of PTAs (1993-95); chair, Budget Committee (1994-96); Board of Directors, Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia (1992-93); member, Committee of 100; Steering Committee, School Bonds Coalition (1996).

Furlow's career spans positions as senior book editor at the National Wildlife Federation; managing editor of the CD-ROM Earth Explorer; and communications in the Carter White House and on Capitol Hill. A Democrat, Furlow holds a B.A. from Baylor and an M.A. from University of Missouri. Elaine and her husband, Robert, have two sons, both at Washington-Lee. The family is active at Mt. Olivet Methodist Church.

(703) 534-8330, (703) 534-4446 (fax)



Statement of Ric Roca (I)

Candidate for Arlington School Board

We did not receive a statement of candidacy from Ric Roca in time for publication in this issue of the BVSCA Newsletter.

Return to the October/November 1997 Newsletter-Index

The BVSCA Home Page