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Candidate profile: Mary A. Martinez, Wilson School Board

mary-martinezSchool district: Wilson

Age: 51

Town (current residence): Cambria

Current occupation and/or community involvement:

I currently work as a Process Operator at Dupont Yerkes site in Tonawanda. As part of the DuPont staff I had the opportunity to experience being part of the Dupont Fun with Science Team, a program that helped energize student's love of science. I have dedicated my time to many volunteer efforts. I have had the pleasure of serving as an officer for Wilson Middle/High PTSA. I am the chairperson for the Scholastic Book Fair, assist with school dances, and more. I was co-founder of the Clothes Give Away and the Ransomville Care and Share Food Pantry. As a doTERRA Essential Oil Wellness Advocate, I helped organize a Wellness All Around Night to benefit both the Ransomville Fire Hall and Care and Share Food Pantry.

Number of years you have lived in the school district: 10

Incumbent: No

Have you run for office before? No

Please tell us about yourself:

I am a proud mother of daughter Rebecca and son Alexander. I love working with children. My favorite event is the PTSA Community Night. We have our BOGO book fair to kick off summer reading, Matty's Chicken BBQ, student art show and music, basket auction and more. It brings our community together, whether you have a child in school or not. For me, volunteering is an important way to teach our children how to think of more than just themselves. We need to lead by example to care for those around us. It makes a difference. It is why I care so much.

Please describe the top issues facing your school district and how you would address them as a school board member:

As the Wilson school district heals from downsizing by the closing of an elementary school they face the challenges of trying to offer as many academic choices as possible. Along with right-sizing the classroom all the while not leaving any child behind. They still have a challenge to maintain a budget that does not overburden our families financially. It is a difficult task. We also have staff contracts in need of being settled. It is my hope to be a positive understanding voice that hears the need of our children, staff and community. Working with other board members to provide the right solution for all is my ultimate goal.

Do you think public education in New York is headed in the right direction? No

Please explain why, in 100 words or less:

Public education is facing many difficult challenges. Teachers are frustrated by The Common Core, parents find it difficult to help their children and students are discouraged. Our teachers actually went to school to learn how to teach but now they are teaching to a test. Creativity is stunted in the classroom, which limits our children because not all learn through the same methods. What's the solution? Aren't we all supposed to be working together? Communication would be a good place to start! We as a community need for our curriculum to be teacher and student friendly. We as parents, can then support our teachers and children, come together united for the good of all. If we could all work together what a wonderful world it would be!

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