Santa Clara County Voter's Guide On Children's Issues

Berryessa Union School District Governing Board

Hugo A. Jimenez

To provide the students of the Berryessa Union School District with the best possible education by making sure our schools are safe, have qualified staff, good facilities and updated instructional materials, and to help parents stay engaged and involved.

  1. In a recent poll by Choose Children 2022 of likely general election voters, more than half of parents with children under age 18 say they are likely to move out of the Bay Area in the next few years. What do you think are the top three issues affecting our children and families and how will you make our region a place where all families can thrive?

    While there are many, many societal issues we can tackle as board members such as mental health, peer pressure and addiction, there are two issues that are major concerns for families. The top issue is affordability. I favor good wages and affordable housing, and while my powers on these issues is limited, I will do what I can to support good wages and affordable housing in our region.
    The second issue is safety. During my time on the board, our district has implemented measures to increase student safety, and we have programs and staff in place to ensure the social/emotional wellbeing of students. I will continue to look for ways to make our school safer.

  2. As we have learned over the past three years, without quality, affordable, childcare, parents can’t go to work. What will you do to address challenges accessing childcare and preschool programs in our diverse communities?

    School districts should explore how they can offer preschool and after school programs to their families. Early childhood education is necessary so the parents can to go to work to earn a living, and it's also crucial to beginning instruction early. I also communicate with our state-level legislators about the need to fund preschool and after school programs.

  3. Much of the student achievement gap has been linked to the opportunity gap that children in low-income families and children of color confront (e.g., lack of access to healthy food, preschool, tutors, and enrichment activities). If elected, what will you do to increase equity of opportunity?

    During the last few years, our district has been looking into how to provide a more diverse array of enrichment classes outside the core subjects. Our schools should also make it a priority to find ways to offer tutoring and additional assistance to all students. While we currently provide free meals to all students, this is something that should be ongoing. I will advocate for that with our state and federal lawmakers.

  4. What steps will you take to support inclusion and outcomes for children with special needs or with disabilities and their families to be fully included in our community?

    Everyone is special in their own way. We all have different abilities and have different things at which we can excel. First and foremost, is offering the support to bring everyone to as close as possible to a necessary level of learning or ability. We are all capable, given the right tools, and we have to make sure we give everyone, regardless of ability, has access to what they need to succeed.

  5. There is a mental health crisis among children, youth, and those who care for and educate them. If elected, how will you use the resources of your new role to improve access to mental and behavioral health services?

    Our district puts a lot of focus on the mental wellbeing of students. All our staff receives training, and we have social workers and school psychologists to provide support to students, parents and staff. I am committed to at least maintaining this level of support and open to exploring ways to increase the mental wellbeing support we provide to our students.