Welcome to Dear Fort Collins, a podcast about issues in and around Fort Collins. In this series, we are featuring interviews with various candidates for the Poudre School District (PSD) Board of Education. Our objective is to equip voters with information that can guide them in making educated decisions. In this episode, we’re joined by Caleb Larson, a candidate for the PSD Board of Education in District G.
Caleb Larson is a product of the Poudre School District, having attended elementary school through high school in the district. After a brief stint playing college soccer, he returned to Fort Collins to pursue an accounting degree at Colorado State University. Caleb now works in the accounting industry and runs a family practice with his parents. His passion for education and his belief in the importance of workforce development and life readiness have motivated him to run for the school board.
Transparency and Community Engagement: Building a Strong Foundation
When asked about the specific projects or issues he would tackle if elected, Caleb emphasized the need for transparency in decision-making. He believes that transparency is crucial for effective governance and for ensuring that all stakeholders have a voice in shaping the district’s policies. Caleb stated:
“I think that transparency needs to come back to the forefront because, for a community like we’ve seen with the consolidation efforts, there felt like for so many parents, there was no transparency over the decision. And I think that in order to be effective in any other decisions, whether it be the budget, transportation issues, you have to be transparent in how you’re getting to those answers.”
His focus on transparency is aimed at establishing a solid foundation for addressing various issues including budgeting, transportation, curriculum, and teacher staffing and wages.
A Unique Perspective: The Value of a Younger Voice
Caleb believes that his unique perspective as a younger candidate sets him apart from others running for the school board. He sees the world through the eyes of today’s students, understanding their concerns about the cost of living, career paths, and the ability to afford a family. Caleb believes that having a younger voice on the board can bring fresh ideas and better represent the interests of the students. He stated:
“I think that bringing a younger perspective to a board that deals with students is really valuable and can be an asset to the community as a whole.”
He advocates for greater involvement of young individuals in local governance, emphasizing the need for diverse representation in shaping educational policies.
The Influence of Role Models: Lessons from Grandpa
Caleb draws inspiration from his grandfather, a Vietnam War veteran. He shared:
“What he’s taught me and what I’ve been able to see through the legacy he’s still leaving is what it means to selflessly serve your community and your country, putting yourself out there so that you can better the lives of others around you.”
This perspective on service has fueled Caleb’s aspiration to contribute positively to his community through his involvement in the school board.
The Superpower of Building Community
When asked about the superpower he would choose to help his community, Caleb focused on the importance of building community and fostering transparency and engagement. He believes that strong communities are built on the foundation of open communication and collaboration. Caleb expressed his desire to unite the city, county, and state through community engagement, stating:
“Getting all the input, being as engaged as possible, giving all the solutions that are collectively brought together, that would be a superpower, I think that could unite any city, any county, any state.”
His focus on community-building underlines his dedication to fostering an inclusive and collaborative atmosphere within the Poudre School District.
Reflecting on Unheeded Advice: The Power of Listening
When asked about a piece of advice he received but didn’t take, Caleb shared a personal experience from his college years. He recalled a coach who expressed doubts about his choice of college for soccer. Although Caleb chose to ignore the advice and pursue his own path, he acknowledged the potential impact of heeding that advice. Caleb said:
“I do wonder if I would have taken that advice and maybe went somewhere else. Maybe I would have been happier, and maybe my career path would have been different.”
Caleb’s reflection on the advice he received highlights the importance of listening to others’ perspectives and considering alternative paths. It serves as a reminder that sometimes the guidance we receive can lead us to unexpected opportunities and outcomes.
Conclusion: A Commitment to Student Success and Community Engagement
In summary, Caleb Larson’s campaign for the Poudre School District Board of Education in District G is rooted in his dedication to education and his aspiration to ensure students receive a top-tier education. His emphasis on transparency, community engagement, and the inclusion of younger perspectives demonstrates his commitment to laying a strong foundation for the district’s future. His background as a Poudre School District alumnus and his professional experience bring a unique perspective to the board. If elected, he aims to focus on student success, workforce development, and life readiness.
For more details on Caleb’s platform and to engage with his campaign, visit https://www.larson4psd.com/