I have set out the following priorities to address in my initial term on the County Board of Education, and I am beginning work on the following steps related to these priorities:
Countywide collaboration for more equitable funding for our Districts, with a specific focus on teacher & staff retention (including teacher/staff/workforce housing)
- Exploring options for countywide collaboration to create a dedicated source of funding for schools across San Mateo County to address current issues of funding inadequacy and inequity.
- Exploring options for countywide collaboration for pooling of resources for facilities, housing and other educational resources.
- Supporting the work of Home for All Educator and Workforce Housing Taskforce & follow-up on AB 2852 and other potential legislation to allow cross-entity collaboration to solve important issues for our Countywide community.
Ensuring FAPE for all students with disabilities
- Countywide outreach to ensure that stakeholders (District Board Members, Parents, Teachers, etc.) are aware of the importance of participation in the SELPA's Community Advisory Committee (CAC), a public accountability committee that advises on the budget and services provided to students with disabilities in schools countywide.
- Promoting transparency in school funding and spending for all students, including "categorical" special education finances, so that good decisions can be made by governing boards.
- Promotion of a County-coordinated initiative to address Dyslexia in all our schools.
- Promotion of a countywide culture of including students with disabilities in general education settings (as a presumption, rather than an exception) to ensure that the civil rights of all students to receive their full educational opportunities with high expectation of success are upheld.
Ensuring accountability for providing mental health supports and services for kids pursuant to *AB 114
*With the passage of AB 114 in 2011, school districts became responsible for ensuring that students with disabilities receive Educationally Related Mental Health Services (ERMHS), including services previously arranged for or provided by county mental health agencies.
- Exploring barriers in the funding mechanisms (and categorical nature of funds) regarding provision of mental health supports.
- Exploring paths to education and shared stakeholder knowledge of all available mental health resources for students of all ages in our County.
Disruption of the school-to-prison pipeline & policies underlying this trend and our juvenile justice system
- Review of data related to disproportional impacts of our current school discipline systems and school cultures (suspensions, expulsions, etc) on students of color, students with disabilities, and students identifying with other marginalized groups.
- Exploring potential solutions and steps to abolish racism, ableism and the marginalization of other communities in our school systems.
I have worked to address these issues as an educator, a PTA leader, a Board Member in the San Mateo-Foster City School District, a non-profit founder, a member of Legislative and Countywide Education and Housing Advisory committees and task forces, and as a County Commissioner, and I am honored to continue this work as a member of the San Mateo County Board of Education.
If you would like more information about these issues or would like to participate in this work, please contact me.