A look into the candidates for LISD Board of Trustees place six


Photo by Emma Short

Two spots for the LISD Board of Trustees will be open on the May ballot. Election Day is May 6.

Two spots for the LISD Board of Trustees will be open on the May ballot. Election Day will be May 6, and early voting will take place April 24-May 2. Here is a look at the two candidates campaigning for the open places for spot six on the board.


Mindy Bumgarner 

Candidate Mindy Bumgarner started volunteering at a young age. She was involved in all sorts of service organizations in high school, including Key Club and Student Council, and as she entered the workforce, she soon found her passion: psychology.

“I found it as a way to not only understand myself but understand those around me,” Bumgarner said. “It really helped me understand that nobody is truly normal. That is a fictitious term we use to make ourselves feel better.”

Bumgarner continued her passion as a crisis counselor, soon earning two master’s degrees and a doctorate in clinical psychology and community mental health. She has now worked as a public and private school counselor, low income therapist, autism diagnostician and as a human resources representative. Bumgarner also spends her free time volunteering at Bob’s House of Hope, a non-profit safe house for male victims of trafficking. 

“I am huge in helping people, [and] I think I bring a unique perspective,” Bumgarner said. “We don’t have anyone that actually has a mental health background [on the board], and after [the COVID-19] pandemic, that is something that is crucial. People’s lives really got thrown into turmoil and got flipped upside down. I think we need to focus on that because we’re starting to see more problems with anxiety in schools, depression and all in general, cognitive dissonance.” 

If elected, Bumgarner’s main priorities are to take the political agenda out of school and advocate for giving teachers in the district a voice. 

“I think [students] are going to deal with politics enough as adults, and trust me, it becomes disgusting and nobody enjoys politics,” Bumgarner said. “The idea of school is to help you be able to make an educated decision as an adult, to be well rounded, to learn everything you possibly can in those 18 years of training. We don’t need to have everything shoved down y’all’s throats of, ‘you have to do this’ or ‘if you do this, you’re wrong.’ That has so much wrong with it.”

Bumgarner said part of her stance on this issue has to do with feedback she has got from teachers and how politics have affected their jobs. 

“We have a lot of teachers out there tired of the political agendas coming into schools,” Bumgarner said. “Teachers are either leaving the profession because of this or there have been more than a few teachers in LISD, when they spoke up, they got fired. That shouldn’t happen. Our teachers are beyond the definition of a vital part of our school district, and they should have a voice. Our teachers should have the biggest part of that voice – they’re the ones that are having to teach us, and they’re also the ones with their jobs on the line.”

Bumgarner has been through the campaigning process before, as her husband was running for town council last year. She said she goes out “door-knocking” every weekend with a group of 30 representatives to spread the word about her campaign, and talk to people about issues they are facing in the district.

“I’m a big person in talking to people,” Bumgarner said. “If I talk to people, we can figure out what’s wrong [and] we can find a solution. It’s not my opinions that matter up there on that school board, it’s what the people in the district care about, and if that’s what they care about, that’s what I need to focus on.”


Michelle Alkhatib 

Candidate Michelle Alkhatib has been an educator for 22 years and has previously been an elementary school teacher and principal. She has served on the Lewisville Education Foundation board as the president of the Council of PTAs and now substitutes and does community work within the district. Alkhatib has lived in the district for almost 18 years, and now has four kids attending schools in the district – one high schooler, two middle schoolers and one elementary schooler. 

“When we bought our house in Lewisville ISD, it was before we had kids, and the main attraction was the reputation of the district,” Alkhatib said. “I knew that this was a place that I wanted to raise my kids and I wanted them to be a part of.”

This is Alkhatib’s first time going through the campaigning process, and she said while she is spreading her own word, she is also trying to spread the importance of voting in the election. As a parent of four kids in the district, Alkhatib is used to attending all kinds of district events. 

“It is important for any parent or any student, or even as a school board member, to know what is going on in the district, get out of your bubble, get out of your comfort zone and just have those conversations,” Alkhatib said. “That’s the biggest piece through the campaign is doing a lot of talking, a lot of meeting and greeting and having those conversations with people.”

Alkhatib’s biggest concern with LISD is school funding, which she said causes other huge issues to arise. 

“Because of the school funding issues that public schools are facing in the state of Texas, that trickles down into the other issues that are there,” Alkhatib said. “The biggest thing is teacher retention, and that all trails back to the amount of funding that we are provided as a district. It is really important for us to continue advocating to state legislatures about the importance of increasing our student allotment.”

Alhatib said the district is having to think creatively about how to solve problems such as these – how are important programs going to be funded while also compensating teachers for what they deserve? 

“I have that background from the education perspective, the PTA perspective, the volunteer perspective and as a parent,” Alkhatib said. “I’m a passionate educator who’s been involved in the district. I am one who will always go out of my way to make sure everybody else has what they need. I’m here to help to be the voice to advocate for all students – whether you are a child of color, you’re special needs, you’re an immigrant – whatever the background is, I’m here to support.”