Daisy Espino: 2021 candidate for Elk Grove District 59 school board
Five Candidates -- Four 4-year terms
Hometown: Mount Prospect
Occupation: Stay-at-home mom, Zumba instructor
Civic involvement: Volunteer in school; PTO co-president
Q. Why are you running for this office? Is there a particular issue that motivates you, and if so, what is it?
A. Being part of this district for only 6 years has been enough for me to fall in love with it and with it I mean the schools, staff, teachers, parents and even the custodians. As a PTO parent I have been able to see the other perspective of things. I can interact with teacher and parents in a whole other level, the warmth you feel in our schools is amazing. I want to keep that sensation in our schools, have our students and parents feel welcomed and safe in every building. Our district has an amazing diversity of cultures, which I want to keep celebrating and supporting so that every student feels comfortable and that way become a better and stronger member of our community. I want each student to feel accepted regardless of their background.
Q. How would you grade the current school board on its response to the pandemic? Why?
A. I personally think they are doing the best they can. They are up to date with the state guidelines and with what then governor recommends. All they do is for the best of the students and to maintain everyone safe, especially our children.
Q. How do you view your role in confronting the pandemic: provide leadership even if unpopular, give a voice to constituents -- even ones with whom you disagree, or defer to state authorities?
A. I always try to stay positive, no matter the situation. We have to reassure people things will get better, offering accurate information all the way from keeping our distance to helping our immune system by eating healthy. I am strong supporter of eating healthy (it's OK to have cheat days) because our bodies are just like a car, if you give the car proper oil changes and give it all it needs it will run nice no matter the outside conditions.
Q. Did your district continue to adequately serve students during the disruptions caused by the pandemic? If so, please cite an example of how it successfully adjusted to continue providing services. If not, please cite a specific example of what could have been done better.
A. Our district did continue to serve our students by providing meals for them. They would be given at school grounds and different locations for easier access for parents. Also supplies were given to each student so that they were able to perform every exercise. They had 2 different dates for supply pick up and had a good window frame to pick up at each school.
Q. Do you have a plan on how to safely and effectively conduct classes in the spring? What have you learned from the fall semester that you would change in the spring?
A. I do not have a specific plan, but from reading the parents comments it would be great if the students who are back in school are taught directly by the teacher in person and not through the laptops. Have other teachers for the students who are in remote learning. I am aware that this means the district will have to hire more teachers, but I think it would be best since teachers will be able to teach in a more effective way and students will learn better.
Q. What other issues need to be addressed?
A. Communication is a big factor and we do have to find better ways to communicate from the administrations all the way down to our families. We must bring that trust back so that the administration, board and community are on the same big team. After all, we all want the best for our students and working together will obviously improve our students education.