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

City of Mountain View

Li Zhang

As the mother of a high school student in our public schools, I am committed to making Mountain View a great place for young people to grow up and thrive. I am committed to making Mountain View a community for all, where we celebrate our diverse backgrounds and nurture the next generation.

  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?

    Housing affordability, mental health, climate change. Mountain View has been a leader in affordable housing and I will continue that direction, supporting affordable housing projects in the pipeline. The City should partner with the schools to address mental health as it affects everyone in the community. Our young people have been leaders in combatting climate change. Working in the alternative/clean energy field, I am committed to accelerating sustainability efforts by the City.

  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?

    Mountain View has in the past, streamlined its development requirements and processes to make it easier to open childcare facilities in the city. The city also built a childcare facility of its own that is run by an outside operator. This facility was intentionally located in a neighborhood with a high propensity of lower income residents after a study that 30% of the spaces are reserved for low-income families, and the city provides funding for subsidies. These are great efforts by the city and I would look for more such opportunities.

  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?

    The city in partnership with school districts and non-profits provides childcare opportunities as mentioned above, has an afterschool program at the middle schools, and has a Teen Center which includes a homework center and enrichment activities. The Teen Center is intentionally located in a neighborhood with a propensity of lower income families. We could look at expanding programs for our youth of all ages especially in our lower income neighborhoods.

  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?

    One of Mountain View's priorities is to be a community for all. I will continue to work towards achieving this goal, and that includes being a community that supports inclusion of children with special needs or with disabilities and their families. I am excited about Mountain View's upcoming Magical Bridge Park. We need to continue to build infrastructure and provide services and programs that support children and all people with special needs.

  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?

    Mountain View made Youth Mental Health and Wellness a priority in 2022. It partners with non-profits to provide services. I will support continuing such efforts to find ways to enhance the provision of services and educate the community to destigmatize mental health challenges.