One of the most sacred privileges we have in America is voting. I vote for the person who will move our nation forward. This begins on the local level. Our school boards and the education of our children are paramount.
The future of our nation’s progress depends on a well-educated populace. All our children, whether white, black, brown or yellow, must be afforded a quality education. Local school excellence reflects who we are as a community. Our Superintendent, Dr. Johnson, has been recognized, by his peers, as one of the most outstanding Superintendents in the Southeast. He is moving us in the right direction.
Mr. Decosimo says he wants to “Get our school board back into the hands of people with conservative values.” Does that mean he wants to take us back to a time when educational advancement suffered? That’s not acceptable in 2020. Marco Perez wants to take us forward, not backward. I will mark my ballot for Marco Perez in School Board District 2, and I ask you to do the same.
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Why not speak to what your candidate brings to the table instead of bashing Mr Decosimo? I assume Hamilton County United has a voice against both candidates, given they support the radical changes for HCDE. I don't agree with the assumption that Mr Perez is any better or worse, but the question is: who can support the students and tax payers of Hamilton County?
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The choice between Marco Perez and Tom Decosimo is about more than who holds a position on the Hamilton County Board of Education, it is about a commitment to every child in Hamilton County versus a few. It is about trusting the experience and creativity of our trusted educators and administration to adapt to a diverse student population versus a one-size-fits-all mentality, and most of all it is about stopping a cycle that provides access to unearned power and influence to traditional Chattanooga families versus actual experience and commitment to our community. In my mind, the clear choice is Marco Perez.
Marco Perez and his family are the blueprint for Hamilton County education success. An involved family that launches a child from a middle-class family to an Ivy League school based on academic merit is admirable. Even more impressive is Marco’s desire to serve the least of these in our community both in positions on non-profits and hands on volunteer work. Marco knows firsthand that not every child in Hamilton County has the support network that many take for granted. As a member of the Board of Education, I know that he will keep that in mind as he makes decisions.
Tom Decosimo, on the other hand, has not put any of his children through public school, much less Hamilton County. How can he start to understand the needs our students have when he has not put himself in a position to be around any of them?
Hamilton County Superintendent, Dr. Bryan Johnson has helped bring our school system from one of the worst in the state to one of the best. Part of that process has been to realize and execute on the idea that not all students learn the same. Marco Perez understands that and supports Dr. Johnson and the change he has brought. Every time I hear Tom Decosimo talk about why he should be elected I feel like he is opening a time capsule. He reminisces about the days of segregation and corporal punishment like a grandfather telling you he walked up hill to school both ways. Marco Perez is our only choice to keep us on the trajectory of improvement.
Finally, it is time for Chattanooga to look to people like Marco Perez to lead our community. There should be no litmus test of how long you have to live in Chattanooga or what your ancestors may or may not have done for it. The real test is who understands the issue of the day, has the heart for the students, and supports our administrators and teachers. The only one running who passes that test is Marco Perez.