Eddie Castillo: 2023 candidate for Addison Elementary District 4 board

  • Eddie Castillo

    Eddie Castillo

Updated 3/24/2023 6:01 PM


Town: Addison


Age on Election Day: 37

Occupation: Deputy

Employer: DuPage County

Previous offices held: None


Q: Why are you running for this office, whether for reelection or election the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you?

A: I am running to help improve the atmosphere within our schools and within our community. The issue of bullying and physical fights has disrupted both the learning of the children who witness it and the victims who are either bullied or injured.

I am also running to have all the local units work together to fight the increase in taxes and save with shared purchases and consolidation of services such as bulk buying, lawn and road service and repair. Lastly I would like the schools to really challenge our students and incorporate the traditional A, B, C, D and F grading system that they will have to face in high school and college.

Q: What is the role of the school board in setting and monitoring curriculum?

A: The school board has the main role of providing all the staff with the needed equipment and tools to teach our children. This allows our children to have the required books, computers, and passionate and supportive educators.

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The other main role is to provide our students with a safe place where they can come to learn. Once we work on these basics, the school board can oversee and work with the superintendent and his staff on achieving the required goals. This includes planning for emergencies like we experienced during the COVID pandemic that shut down our schools.

The schools, at that time, did not have a backup plan and that caused our children's learning and social interactions to suffer. We need a plan to face these challenges if they happen in the future.

Q: Are there curriculum issues within the district that you feel need particular attention from the board?

A: Yes, I believe that the current model of Area of Concern (AC), Approaching Standards (AC), Meeting Standards (MS), and Meeting Expectations (ME) does not prepare our middle school students for high school.

Our high schools use the traditional letters to grade students. We need to incorporate the same system that the high schools and colleges use. Also we need to work on increasing the scores overall in the district.


Q: How do you view your role in confronting policy or curriculum controversies: provide leadership even if unpopular, give a voice to constituents -- even ones with whom you disagree, or defer to state authorities?

A: I believe the role of the school board is to provide the best education to students in a safe environment. If the parents and students disagree with a policy, then we need to come to a solution to find common ground and ultimately a solution. I generally do not seek or look for confrontations, but I am not scared to express my concerns either.

Q: Concerns are growing regarding a new resurgence of the pandemic. If another massive outbreak of infectious disease occurs, what have we learned from the COVID-19 pandemic that will guide your decision making?

A: I learned that we as a society were not ready and we can still feel the effects today. Our children did not learn as much and their person to person contact and social growth also stalled. I learned that we have to have a plan ready to go at the start of every school year.

That can be in the form of having the correct technology and equipment available to having an agreement with the library, village, park district or even townships to spread our students into smaller sized classrooms. This can be done with parent input, school board input and lastly student input.

Q: Describe your experience working in a group setting to determine policy. What is your style in such a setting to reach agreement and manage school district policy? Explain how you think that will be effective in producing effective actions and decisions of your school board.

A: My experience comes in the form policy enforcement and writing policy. I work for county government and as a supervisor, one of my main duties is to enforce and make sure that employees are following the set policy.

Also I report any recommendations in policy that I believe may need to changed or modified. This is important since many times the way people do things is not how policy requires it. I am a firm believer that if you have a policy in place, you have to enforce it. Otherwise the policies will not be taken seriously.

Q: What makes you the best candidate for the job?

A: I believe that I am the best candidate for this position. I have three daughters currently in the school district. One is enrolled in the junior high and two are enrolled in elementary school. I was there with all the other parents when we had to figure out remote learning from home. I was there when families had to change everything to make sure their children received an education.

Secondly, I am dedicated to giving my time to our community. I currently sit on a nonprofit youth sports group. I spend my entire year volunteering as a youth coach in basketball, volleyball and softball. Lastly, my work in law enforcement allows me to bring a safety and security perspective to the board.

Q: What's one good idea you have to better your district that no one is talking about yet?

A: Actual collaboration between government and private community groups. At the recent State of Addison presentation, our school board confirmed that our taxes will be going up over 7%. This is unacceptable. Families are struggling to buy food for their families. We need to work with the high school auto shop and have students in the auto department work on small maintenance like oil changes and tire rotations on school owned autos.

When I was in high school in nearby Willowbrook High School, we did these types of things. We also need to work on more efficient lawn care and snow removal. The library, village, township and many of the school buildings are very close to each other. The village and township already own their own plows, we can save money by having them remove snow in the parking lots instead of hiring an outside company to do the same work. These are just some of the smaller ideas. We can save much more of each layer of government worked together.

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