Priorities
My time as a member and vice chairperson on the American Indian Parent Advisory Committee (AIPAC) for Minneapolis Public Schools solidified my commitment to addressing the systemic issues that plague our schools and maintain racial disparities in education.
My top priority is to increase access to culturally responsive education, with curriculum that accurately depicts history and experience of Black, Indigenous, people of color (BIPOC) including the strengths and resiliency of these communities. Here are some strategies to get there: 
  • Increase the number of racially diverse or BIPOC administration, staff and teachers
  • Increase professional development that prepares administration, staff and teachers to competently teach and serve BIPOC children and families 
  • Implement accountability measures for administration, staff and teachers to work toward racial equity and decrease personal biases
  • Ensure more support staff in the classroom for the benefit of children and teachers 
  • Enhanced resources and funding for special education programs, teachers, and students
  • Increase access to culturally responsive mental health support available to all children and families
  • Expand and enhance collaboration with community partners who provide services, resources, mentoring, and post-graduation opportunities
  • Address the negative impact of district decisions made without input from BIPOC communities and implement a process to regularly gather community input to inform future decision making
Although these strategies will also lead to better student engagement, performance, and graduation rates, more attention is needed to improve the reading levels of MPS students. The following strategies have been found to be effective in improving reading:
  • Provide teachers with literacy training and coaching to increase their knowledge and skill in teaching reading 
  • Collect data on reading level and report out to parents and community on reading improvements 
  • Identification of reading issues is not enough, more support and accountability is needed to get students connected with testing and assessments to accurately diagnosis the issues; and work with families to ensure they receive the appropriate level of support, especially when financial and educational barriers exist