Board of Education, Trustee Area 2 / Monterey Peninsula Unified School District
Education Quality and Unity with Instruction Transforming Youth (EQUITY) Success
A 20-year resident of Seaside, I work as a software engineer implementing legislated programs benefiting service members and their families throughout the world. I have a BA in Business, Economics and Geography from UCSB and a Master’s from CSUMB with the Panetta Institute.
Living 15 years in Europe prior to Seaside, I value diversity of culture. I appreciate the broad academic experiences offered by our neighborhood schools. My priority is to ensure ALL students have access to curriculum that will enable their personal success. I am proud of MPUSD’s broad student support services.
As a mom with two school aged boys attending MPUSD, I was elected to the Board of Education in 2007 with the goal of improved academics, technology and sustainable practices in district schools. My students attended Highland Elementary, Colton Middle and Monterey High School (MAOS), developing life-long friends and leadership skills which have enabled them to complete post graduate degrees.
In 2012, I dedicated my Public Policy Master Thesis to the district with ‘A Solar Garden for the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District’, which became a catalyst for the peninsula’s largest solar power and water conservation initiatives, saving $ 1 Million annually in utility costs through sustainable practices and helping with significant salary and wage increases for staff.
During my time on the Board, the district has catapulted into national recognition with Arts in our elementary schools and computer science pathways in our middle and high schools. I worked closely with staff and students to build a Computer Science pathway from MPUSD to MPC, as one of the few districts in the state to require Computer Science literacy as a graduation requirement, providing a foundation for participation in Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs for ALL students in our community.
I will ensure delivery of top-quality academics so that every student in our community can achieve success. I will continue to address the digital divide, which aligns with inequality in access to high quality educational services and healthcare in our community.
My priorities include:
With a Master’s in Public Policy and a career in IT, you will be voting for a progressive advocate for our students who is passionate about Public Education and has the tools to ensure tax payer investments in public education are efficiently and equitably used for the best possible education services, so that students are prepared for post-secondary careers and college. I am the better candidate for partnering with public agencies. With a strong business background, I am better able to identify the best solution for broad community challenges including housing, healthcare, social emotional and food supports.
Having weathered the Great Recession, I am the better candidate to manage the current recession while delivering strong curriculum. In spite of the Great Recession, we passed 2 General Obligation Bonds financing $millions of improvements to our campuses. We hired a visionary Superintendent. We have established a Technical Career Computer Science pathway from Middle School to High School, where our students have access to college instruction in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math. Elementary school students have access to music and art. Dr. Martin Luther King School of the Arts is nationally ranked and our Dual Language K – 8 instructs students in Spanish and English. Athletic fields are renewed.
Seaside HS leads nationally. The Washington Post recognized Seaside HS as a National School of Opportunity, with equitable access to career opportunities. Seaside’s ‘New Technology’ network was key to transforming delivery of instruction to distance learning during the pandemic.
In past MPUSD elections I have been endorsed by the Weekly, Monterey Herald and many community members.
This election I am proud to be endorsed by Mel Mason and our Mayor Ian Oglesby, as well as fellow MPUSD Trustee Area 2 Board members:
Dr. Bettye Lusk, Alana Myles and Board President Tom Jennings.
Paid for by Debra Gramespacher • FPPC# NA