Sarasota County School Board Member Eric Robinson recently paid a visit to campus, giving a talk during a meeting of the Young Republican Club. The conversation entailed details about Robinson’s position on the school board, issues like curriculum that the school board addresses, as well as the political side of the county’s education system.
A former Sarasota County Republican Party chairman, Robinson has been a member of the school board for about 15 months, visiting the Pine View campus on several occasions during this time. During his presentation, Robinson mainly discussed his position as a member of the school board, and what that means in terms of helping schools in Sarasota County. “The kids enjoyed listening to all the anecdotes he had to share,” math teacher Wayne Robertson, sponsor of the Young Republicans, said.
“It was very interesting to find out what happens behind the scenes,” ninth-grader Alexiya Mikerina said concerning Robinson as a guest speaker. Robinson had previously spoken to the club last year before his presentation on Feb. 15.
Additionally, Robinson touched on the upcoming referendum, “Whenever you have young people who want to get involved, or anyone who wants to get involved, I want to be there and ask them questions and encourage them to get involved. So one of the things we talked about was getting them to come out and walk door to door for the referendum, to get more of those dollars to Pine View.”
The referendum, which has been in place since 2002, yields $55 million dollars to be distributed amongst the schools in Sarasota County. This money provides 30 minutes of extra teaching, programs designed to reduce gaps in academic achievement among students of differing socioeconomic and racial backgrounds, and supplies extra funds to hire new art teachers. Robinson also donated $500 dollars, his daily salary, to the club to continue spreading its message.
Although Robinson will most likely not be coming back to speak to the club until next year, planned guest speakers for the coming months who spoke the previous year include Mike Moran and Charlie Heinz.
“He wasn’t necessarily talking about specific views or topics, but just giving them a better idea of how they can get involved even now as a young person and moving on through their careers,” Robertson said. “When you read the newspaper sometimes it is hard to to tell what’s real, what’s fake, but this way he’s able to share not just what has happened, but what is happening right now.”