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Michael Gonzales, School Board Candidate

on January 31, 2018

Michael Gonzales was born in San Francisco but has been a Richmond resident for the past 20 years. He’s a man of many hats: a father of four and grandfather of one, a teacher, a pastor, a counselor and a consultant.

After being recruited to run for school board three years ago by local teachers frustrated by the  West Contra Costa School District, Gonzales was recruited again to run in this year’s school board elections.

Gonzales, 63, has one goal: make the district reevaluate its practices and adjust to student needs.

“I’ve been working in other districts helping them turn around, and watching the district where my kids go not turn around,” he says.

Gonzales has also worked in Napa and Solano County.

A big part of Gonzales’s motivations lie within the No Child Left Behind act of 2002, which was intended to set a nation-wide standard for students to meet. Gonzales claims this was never properly implemented in West Contra Costa. Even in his own children’s experiences in the district, he saw “redundancy” in their education and a lack of focus on actual teaching.

“You have to value instructional minutes. You don’t interrupt it, you don’t stop it, you don’t give inappropriate tests.”

No Child Left Behind was replaced last school year by the Every Student Succeeds Act, which puts more control in the hands of states to determine their own accountability goals.

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