Delta school trustee candidate Q&A: Victor Espinoza

The North Delta Reporter sent school trustee candidates a list of six questions to answer

The North Delta Reporter sent school trustee candidates a list of six questions to gauge their positions on some of the major issues in the 2018 civic election campaign. We gave candidates a limit of 400 words total to answer. Here’s what Kids Matter candidate Victor Espinoza had to say:

(Note, all candidates’ answers have been edited for length, clarity and to conform with Canadian Press style, as required.)

1) Why are you running for school board?

I want to make sure Delta schools are safe, inclusive and well-funded places where all students can achieve their maximum potential.

2) What, in your view, is the job of a school trustee?

I see myself as part of a larger board facing many changes in growth, curriculum, student needs, equity among schools and interaction with partner groups. My role would be to help the board navigate these changes in an accountable way. Being a trustee will allow me to contribute meaningfully to student success and the positive working and learning environments of students, teachers and support staff. I will advocate for safe and inclusive schools, fully-funded classrooms that meet the needs of all, and respect for/collaboration with our partners.

3) What are the biggest challenges facing students today and what will you do to help kids to overcome them?

The biggest challenge facing students, apart from chronic funding shortfalls, is how students navigate the World Wide Web, their exposure to social media platforms and online bullying. The big question is how do we teach students to safely and critically navigate the web? Students forget that once something is put on the web, it is out there forever. Cyberbullying can follow a victim everywhere, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, from school to the mall and all the way into the comfort of their home. Schools need to have safe media use policies in place. Media courses and awareness needs to be taught starting at an early age. Students need to be made aware of the dangers waiting for them online, how posts may affect their lives or ability to get jobs down the road, the addictive nature of social media.

4) What is missing in our schools (for students as well as staff) and how do you plan to address those shortfalls?

Parents want to be heard, be included. We need to look at how parents are engaged and what mechanisms are in place for their voices to come through. What is missing is a means for parents to stay in tune with what is happening in their kids’ schools. What students learn in their classes can often be a mystery to parents. Open channels need to be established between all stakeholders.

5) Many issues that come before the board boil down to a question of money: how/where best to spend the funds allocated to the district by the Ministry of Education. Do you think that the district is adequately funded by the province, and if not, how will you advocate for more money for Delta schools?

The district is not sufficiently funded. The funding formula needs to be reviewed. All levels of government need to be lobbied for funds. Partnerships with the city need to be formed. Take the state of disrepair that many elementary playgrounds or secondary tracks find themselves in due to years of provincial government neglect. Unfortunately, much of the work needed to raise funds has fallen onto school PACs. This problem is exacerbated by the fact that not all schools can raise funds equally due to demographic inequalities.

6) Barring additional funds from the province, how can the district best cover budget shortfalls or pay for projects/programs on its wish list?

Selectively and carefully partner with ethical and responsible private partners to bring funds into the school. Also, ultimately, the best solution would be to effectively lobby the provincial government.

The civic election takes place on Saturday, Oct. 20.

SEE ALSO: 43 candidates running in Delta civic election

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Hazmat team called to Surrey recycling centre

Witness at scene said several workers reported affects including coughing, headaches and chest tightness

Surrey killer foiled by cops’ suspicion he was underage in a bar

Birinderjeet Singh Bhangu was shot dead outside the Comfort Inn and Suites Hotel on Fraser Highway

Delta man charged after police surround Tsawwassen home

Troy Kevin Reimer, 52, is charged with one count of uttering or conveying a threat to cause death or bodily harm

Community invited to help with Downtown Surrey BIA’s fence art project

Association is hoping to change the ‘narrative’ for 135A Street with artwork

VIDEO: B.C. MLA Michelle Stilwell takes first steps in nearly 30 years

‘It actually felt like walking. It’s been 27 years… but it felt realistic to me’

Report of dead body in B.C. park actually headless sex doll

This discovery, made at Manning Park on July 10, led police to uncovering two other sex mannequins

Grand Forks fire chief found to have bullied, harassed volunteer firefighter: report

WorkSafeBC, third-party human resources investigation looking into allegations complete

Dog recovering after being drenched in hot coffee, B.C. man charged

Man was taken into custody, charged, and released pending a court date

Taekwondo instructor, 21, identified as B.C. bat rabies victim

Nick Major, 21, an instructor at Cascadia Martial Arts in Parksville

Science expedition to Canada’s largest underwater volcano departs Vancouver Island

Crews prepared for a two-week research mission to the Explorer Seamount

B.C. shipyard to get one-third of $1.5 billion frigate-repair contract

The federal government has promised to invest $7.5 billion to maintain the 12 frigates

Worried about bats? Here’s what to do if you come across one in B.C.

Bat expert with the BC Community Bat Program urges caution around the small creatures

B.C. on right road with tougher ride-hailing driver rules, says expert

The provincial government is holding firm that ride-hailing drivers have a Class 4 licence

Most Read