We Are Parkside!
I would be remiss to not address my little neighborhood school in my campaign. Parkside Elementary is where my heart is! I love this little school, it was a “soft place” for my kids to fall in a turbulent time in our family life. Like many families, 2008 flipped our life on its ear and we ended up moving our kids to three schools, in three cities, in three years. At Parkside we found teachers and a principal who loved our kids. They quickly saw our son’s learning and speech needs and became his champion to get on track. We found out that being at a Title I school meant more opportunities, more help, and more options. My kids had never experienced the diversity they saw at Parkside and thrived being with kids differently abled and from different backgrounds, those interactions made them the young adults they are today. To this day when I walk in that front foyer it feels good, it feels right.
Parkside has continued to change and become even more diverse, but one thing remains the same the people who work there and the families care deeply about their students. Parkside has challenges and as a school board member for that neighborhood, I have worked hard to keep Parkside at the forefront of the district leadership’s minds. In recent years I have seen a shift where Parkside has become a priority and good things have come out of it. Strong leadership, fierce teachers, and the work of the students have even brought gains at Parkside this last year.
My only regret of leaving the school board because I really do believe it was the right time, is that neither candidate running for my school board position has strong ties with Parkside. My hope was to find someone who had children who went through school there, volunteered or worked there, and loved that school the way I do. But as this did not happen, I am glad to have a candidate who has worked with hundreds of Parkside Panthers as a tutor in our community. I still worry about who will fight for my little school. Who loves the staff, kids, and culture? Who wants Parkside to succeed in the future and appreciate where it has been in the past? To all my Parkside family, past and present, please, continue to fight for our school and I promise I will too! We are Parkside! And it’s still the “best school you can go to in the USA!”