Those of us who speak up for our children’s needs, express our frustrations with a failed system and have a critical voice of our leadership have been branded by some as, cynical and hopeless. What compels me to reach out to you is in fact, my hope for change. I believe in our redemptive system of Democracy. The beauty of our American ways is that the difference in our opinions does not take away from anyone’s civic duty to vote or right to advocate. I speak to you from the corner of my world, from my street, from my neighborhood and for my family. Every family’s experience, even the sad stories, constitute the reality of the environment that we live in. Do not be fooled by discouraging rhetoric, our stories do matter. We share our stories for strength. We speak up for change. We advocate for action, not promises. We elect you. Your profession and power is because of the constituency that you vowed to serve.

With the South San ISD Tax Ratification Election, we have your attention. We are all listening and watching, we will hold each other accountable. Lay down your defenses, listen to our stories, and empathize with our frustrations. We cannot change a reality that we do not acknowledge. More money, may alleviate some issues, but the real solution is a cohesion of transparency, accountability, and partnership. This begins with communication and allowing all involved a seat at the table. Change is hard, it does not happen overnight, and it does not happen alone. Change is coming. Term limits and contracts will end. What is spoiled will rot away and the revealed truth will always be victorious. Let us rebuild truth and trust in partnership. If our community is in need of health services, we build a clinic. If families are important, we build a park. If the education of our children is important, we must rebuild our schools. We must invest in the infrastructure of our outdated campuses, in the morale and motivation of our educators and students and inspire trust in our community. We must support and value the educators and staff for they are instrumental in the formation of our children’s minds and character. We must step up and deliver to special needs students by truly leveling the educational field and supporting not function but excellence! For when a community serves it’s most vulnerable, the path is always progress. To truly save our kids and our schools, you must engage our community. We are here. Our voice is loud. We will vote. Indeed there is hope, and we are bringing it forward. Sincerely, Candelaria Perez