Patricio Dujan, School Board Candidate

on January 31, 2018

When Patricio Dujan’s daughter arrived to her first day of fifth grade at Washington Elementary School in Richmond last August, the father of two was stunned to realize his eldest child would be starting the school year with a substitute teacher.

“Not even a long-term substitute, just a substitute,” Dujan said.

Dujan, 45, has worked in the education arena for more than 13 years, developing tools and materials to improve classroom success — first with the Scholastic Corporation and now as a vice president with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. But that August day was the moment that would lead to his campaign for a seat on the West Contra Costa school board. It is his first time running for elected office.

Dujan attended the University of California, Berkeley, before going to University of California, San Diego for a graduate program in global policy and strategy. His interest in international management and the foreign service was sparked by his time working in Teach For America after graduating from Berkeley.

He and his family have lived in El Cerrito since 2007. His daughters are now in sixth and first grades at Washington Elementary, and ensuring academic success for them and their classmates is the driving force behind his candidacy.

If elected, he plans to focus on teacher retention and through that, improving student outcomes — especially in meeting reading and math grade level standards.

“This isn’t a revolutionary concept or campaign,” he said. “It’s a back-to-basics approach: Bring in research-based practices, and do them consistently.”

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