Melody Bolduc

was raised in the Mandarin area of Jacksonville by supportive parents who placed a high value on education. Melody attended Beauclerc Elementary School, and then her parents took advantage of school choice and sent her to St. Joseph’s Catholic School in Mandarin. She graduated high school with honors from Bishop Kenny and earned the Florida Merit Scholarship. Melody dreamed of becoming a teacher from childhood and chose the University of North Florida due to the known strength of their College of Education. Melody graduated summa cum laude from the University of North Florida in 2000. She took her first teaching job at Wolfson High School and continued to work within the public school system until 2014.

Melody will soon celebrate 18 years of marriage to her best friend from high school, and is the proud mother to two beautiful, spirited, and brilliant teenage girls. Melody is an active member of her local church and has been serving in a leadership capacity as a teacher, worship leader, and children’s ministry director over the last 15 years. She is in the process of publishing her first children’s book and is completing the last requirements for her doctorate.


What are your priorities for Duval County Public Schools?

Get Back to Basics: 

  • Accountability - Proper reporting to ensure student safety
  • Budget - Make sure spending of every dollar makes sense
  • Curriculum - Focus on the fundamentals
  • Diverse Options - Enhance Vocational & Technical Program Offerings
  • Educators - Address Retention and Shortage

Fearless Defender of School Choice & Parental Rights 

Why did you choose these as priorities?

Our school system is losing teachers and students because we have lost public trust. Teachers, parents, and community members – all stakeholders agree. We all want our teachers and students to be safe. We all want our children learning. We want our tax dollars spent meaningfully and responsibly. 

Although school board members are elected by district, they make decisions for the whole of Duval County, which occasionally leads to conflict. What is your approach and philosophy for making decisions in this situation?

I believe open ears and an open heart are the best communication tools we have as human beings. Maturity, humility, and and a willingness to put other ambitions aside is what is necessary for the Board to function together and do the right thing for children. To foster a working relationship with the rest of the Board, I would come in ready to listen and learn, understanding that I am not the source of all the answers. I understand that the population I serve in District 7 is not the same (for example) as that of Chairman Willie in District 4. To do right by all of the students in the county, I need to hear what other board members are seeing and hearing in their districts; I need to listen to their recommendations and consider them. 

Over the last few years, the Florida Legislature has had a significant impact on local public education. What are your top issues at the state level, and how would you work with legislators in Tallahassee to represent the needs of our students?

Though I know we can accomplish a great deal on the local level, collaboration is a core requirement for teachers and something at which I excel. I have the support of my local legislators, and I will ensure that our district schools, in regard to funding, are on their radar. I will also be a voice to ensure our local legislators know everything going on in the district regarding safety, literacy rates, teacher concerns, and the budget.

Every student will know that if I am elected, from city council to Tallahassee, their school board member has a partnership with municipal and state officials to ensure our children get the best public education. My top issues are 1) the overemphasis on standardized testing and the use of test scores to measure student and teacher performance and 2) the lack of trained medical staff and supplies in our schools, specifically that there is funding for a school nurse on every campus 3) funding for additional teachers and staff to meet the growing needs of an increasing ELL student population and a majority who are levels behind in core subjects- reading, writing, and math.

Please provide a description of how you would differentiate between the governance responsibility of the school board and the management role of the superintendent.

Dr. Bernier appears to be quite accomplished and experienced, and I am encouraged by both the unanimous hiring decision of our current board and my communication with him that he has the right vision and strategies to make the necessary improvements in the district. Dr. Bernier needs a Board who will communicate regularly and effectively and empower him through good policymaking to implement those strategies.

The Duval County School Board recently heard a consultant’s proposal to redraw school boundaries, align feeder patterns, and consolidate many small or under-enrolled schools and has been collecting input from the community regarding the proposal. What will be your approach to adjusting the Master Facility Plan?

The current Board fully intends to make decisions before a new Board is installed (and rightfully so since they have had the community conversations and feedback during their tenure); however, due to inflation, increasing labor and materials costs, rising bond rates, and competition caused by changes in student load and how education is delivered, their plan must be scalable. We have 55-60,000 empty seats, and while no one wants to be the one to close schools, consolidation is inevitable. I would be hard-pressed to vote to close a school that is well attended, high-performing, and/or the center of a community.

We will constantly be revisiting the plan to be able to react to the changing dynamics of education and the economy.








of public schools in Duval County earned an "A," "B," or "C" in 2021-2022.