White Center, WA I want to first respectfully acknowledge the Puget Sound Salish People, who have been for many generations and will continue to be the rightful stewards of this land.
Hello, my name is Aaron Garcia and I'm running for Highline Schools Director for District 1.
It is with great admiration that I attempt to follow in the footsteps of fearless and humble leaders such as Sili Savusa and Tyrone Curry. Like them, I have the honor of serving in the very community where I grew up. Over the last nine years I’ve worn different “professional” hats. For six years I worked in partnership with Highline Public Schools as a college and career learning specialist, mentoring 1,000+ students and helped them to reach their goals of higher education and jump-start their careers in a variety of trades. I have worked in the secondary, postsecondary and non-profit worlds and volunteered on several White Center committees and boards and in a variety of local programs. Throughout this experience I have connected firsthand with students and families who have shared their knowledge about the specific issues affecting our schools. I have a vision for Highline that better serves the diverse young people of our community.
The primary issues and examples of action my campaign will address are:
FAMILY AND COMMUNITY BELONGING AND INCLUSION
Mediation and appeal process and policy for decisions that fail to be centered in student voice.
Legislative priority- state law that will allow a student representative to be a voting member on the school board for a one year term.
HEALTHY AND CREATIVE STUDENTS
FEEST Youth Leadership priorities Fresh food: All meals to be cooked on campus (not frozen) using fresh, local ingredients Variety: One culturally relevant entreé on the menu per month Affordable: School food should be free for all students
Dedicated and protected funding for the in school arts curriculum and physical education/athletics.
Access to before and after school programs
21st century school buildings for a 21st century workforce- Future Evergreen and Tyee High School and Pacific Middle School. ADA accessibility for buildings and facilities above and beyond what is required by state and federal law.
Equitable distribution of resources to schools that match the schools visions of supporting each student by name, strength and need
These themes address priorities and solutions collected directly from conversations with youth and families with whom I built lasting relationships. In regards to belonging and inclusion, one specific example of an issue I would like to address is the board meeting public comment policy. As it currently stands, students, families and concerned neighbors get only four minutes to share their concerns and advocate for their needs. If we truly want to live up to the mission of knowing every student by name, strength and need we must create a better avenue to hear from our community. Many of these concerns have built up over weeks, months or years and having to present them in four minutes doesn’t give them the attention they deserve. In contrast, HSD staff have unlimited time to present their recommendations, concerns and suggestions to the board, To some, this might seem like a trivial concern however, it is emblematic of the lack of fairness and the power differential that our students and families face when navigating a system that does not, look, feel and learn like they do. If we can’t hold the board to the expectation of truly listening and hearing from our students and community, how can we expect that from the staff? I hope to work in partnership with my fellow board members to set policy that puts student and family voice at the center of the conversation as they are the people we are here to serve.
My passion and vision for improving our schools is the reason why I'm officially announcing my candidacy for the Highline School District Director for District 1. Over the next couple of months I look forward to meeting YOU! I will continue to share my platform and hear the concerns and goals you have for our schools. I will hold listening sessions, 1on1 coffee meetings and much more.
Election day is Tuesday, August 6th. Can I count on your support?
Friends and Family: Many of you have asked me if you could support me financially…. Yes, you can, but before that my goal for May is to reach 1,500 social media and email newsletter “Likes” or “Follows.” I can either pay social media to help attract people to my website or you can help me by inviting your network. So, my ask of you is that you hit the “SUBSCRIBE” button now and share with your friends!
UPDATES IN NEWSLETTER
P.S. Here is some cool information and stuff I've done, that may matter to you:
All Voters in the Highline District get to vote for school board member, regardless of what district your board member represents. Highline Schools Director for District 1 encompasses:
Cascade Middle School,Evergreen High School, Hazel Valley Elementary, Mount View Elementary, New Start High School, Shorewood Elementary, White Center Heights Elementary.
White Center Community Development Association (CDA)- Community Inclusion Manager- The White Center CDA works to eradicate poverty and eliminate racism by building a vibrant, economically diverse community.
SSCC College Access Programming- Learning Specialist- mentoring 1,000+ students in reaching their goals of higher education and jump-starting their careers in a variety of trades
South Seattle College (SSC) 13th Year Scholarship-Coordinator- Expanded the program from pilot project at Cleveland High School to a 50+ application rate at Chief Sealth International High School.
Western Washington University- Student Government Vice President and Associated Students Productions Director. Hosted many REALLY cool, large scale campus events, represented 14,000 students and managed a budget of approximately $1,500,000.00.
Evergreen High School Wrestling Team- Assistant Volunteer Coach- As a former HS wrestler I came back to support the team.
New Evergreen Wolverine Booster Club- Founder- Three years since bring back the Booster Club and we have raised over $100,000 in grants and donations to directly support Evergreen Athletics and Activities.
White Center Jubilee Days- Board Member- Helped host the baddest(in a good way) party this side of Roxbury.
White Center Chamber of Commerce- Board Member- Committed to preserving small businesses with a racial equity anti-displacement lens.
Black and Brown Summit -facilitator- Conference supporting black and brown young men on how to navigate post-secondary systems.
Asociación Latina de Acción y Servició (ALAS- Advisor- Latinx youth leadership development school club.
National Honor Society - Advisor - NHS serves to recognize those students who have demonstrated excellence in the areas of scholarship, service, leadership, and character.
Vote Yes For Highline- CO-chair- Helped lead the successful passage of 2018 school levy.
2018-2019 PESB Clock Hour work group- Work Group member -This workgroup provides recommendations on continuing education policy, clock hours, and related issues in our state.
Instruction on Race and Identity 2019-2021 Implementation Plan- Committee member-
Capital Facilities Advisory Committee (CFAC)- Co-chair- Community led advisory committee for capital facilities, bond and school boundary recommendations to the school bosses which included recommending rebuilding Evergreen and Tyee High Schools and Pacific Middle School.
2015 Highline Public Schools Athletics Evergreen Service Area Community Recognition
2018 Evergreen High School Alumni of the Year Recognition
Paid for by Aaron Garcia For Highline School District 401, Director District 1
11318 20th PL SW, Burien, WA 98146
My name is Aaron Garcia "I Approve this Website"