Teasa Ezeh: 2023 candidate for East Aurora Unit District 131 board, 4-year term
Age on Election Day: 47
Occupation: Daycare provider
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 interested in running for the school board to represent all students and the community. I want to be the champion of ensuring there are resources and support that best educate our youth in a healthy, safe, and encouraging environment. I am motivated to create genuine opportunities that allow everyone to be challenged and reach their goals and potential.
Q: What is the role of the school board in setting and monitoring curriculum?
A: To work with the district leadership that we can fund and grow different learning opportunities.
Q: Are there curriculum issues within the district that you feel need particular attention from the board?
A: Currently, I have no concerns regarding the curriculum. However, I would like to continue supporting the school district's direction in increasing the graduation rate, which has been improving over the past three years.
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: As a board member, I would confer with school leadership to provide guidance and feedback regarding required state and federal policies with increased involvement from the entire board.
I would encourage leaders to take parent and student surveys to address policies and curriculum controversies impacting our youth's educational environment and safety. I am an active and supportive member of the district's constituent committees that provides feedback to the leadership team, which allows all parents and community members to have a voice. I would recommend that this platform continue to engage all constituents.
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: The school district provided excellent resources for teaching and learning for the students during a precedent time; even though this was new to everyone, the support created an opportunity for our students to continue their education. However, the area that may need additional help would be the social and emotional resources for students in an isolated conditions.
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: As stated earlier, I serve on several community and school advisory committees, which require leading in getting things done. I lean on managing discussions and decisions with an equal voice. I believe collaboration and every opinion are essential to come to a consensus.
Q: What makes you the best candidate for the job?
A: I am a taxpaying parent of alumni from East Aurora High School in 2020 during the pandemic, a seventh-grader athlete, and elementary and preschool children. I believe that resources used to educate children should not impact other invested residents, but our education system provides quality instruction to our students.
My professional demeanor and personality are being a team player who likes to get things done collaboratively. I do not engage in finger-pointing but in how to best address issues and community concerns of our students. A board member should understand that we are representatives of our students, parents, and the community, not ourselves. Because I am committed to the children and what is best for their educational growth, my service as a board member would serve our education system and the entire community with genuine integrity.
Q: What's one good idea you have to better your district that no one is talking about yet?
A: I want to ensure that students can stay focused as we motivate them to navigate their educational pursuits. As a board member, I want our children to feel safe, protected, happy, and honestly just allowing them to thrive.