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|Alameda, Santa Clara County, CA||June 8, 2010 Election|
Supporting our School System at every level!
By Garrett YeeCandidate for Member of the State Assembly; District 20; Democratic Party
This information is provided by the candidate
Fully funding education is a top priority and restoring the billions of dollars of state cuts.Garrett truly understands the meaning of "quality education." As a father to three children who are a product of California's public schools, he has been an active participant in the school system for the past 20 years. From helping with homework to volunteering with the PTA, Garrett has seen first hand the challenges and successes of our schools. Unfortunately, he has also seen the decline in the quality of our education system in California.
There can be no greater priority than to prepare for the future and educate our children. Garrett believes that education is the key to unlocking so many of our problems today. For example, the prison industry uses third grade reading proficiency rates to determine how many prison beds they will need in the future - there is a direct correlation between a poor education system and crime. Instead of putting money into the prison system, we should put money into our schools.
Beyond K-12, there needs to be hope for every individual to improve themselves and realize their dreams. Higher education, including community colleges, are a way for anyone to expand their possibilities, but only if they have affordable, quality access.
The power of educational role models runs strong in Garrett's family. His father dropped out of high school, but while in his mid-thirties, attended San Jose City College, completed his bachelor's degree from San Jose State, and eventually completed a Masters degree. After student teaching in Newark, he found a teaching job in Fremont, and became the California State Teacher of the Year in 1978.
Dramatic, long-term reform and immediate action is needed to help the hundreds of thousands of students and families being short-changed out of a quality education. Improving our public school system at every level is the most important issue facing our community today.
California's public schools used to be among the best in the nation. We need to work hard to regain our standing in the nation. Students from kindergarten to college are being impacted by budget cuts and top-down policies that don't allow for creativity and growth in the classroom. Garrett believes that education is not only the key to improving our society; it is one of the major vehicles to improve our economy. California employers need educated and trained workers in order to compete in this global economy, and it starts with a good education.
Garrett is focused on the need for quality, and support, of our community college and four-year institutions. As California's state universities reduce their capacity and expect community colleges to accept more students, we need to do a better job at making the transition from community colleges to four-year institutions more seamless. At the same time, we need to support lifelong learning in this state, so that once again California can produce the best and the brightest leaders for our future.
His focus on education has been demonstrated in his service to the local community college. Since 2002, Garrett has served on the Ohlone College Board of Trustees. He is known by some of his colleagues as the "voice of reason" during a time when the college underwent several transitions. His leadership as a board member has had a positive impact on the college. According to past Ohlone College President Dr. Doug Treadway, "Now more than ever, California needs leaders like Garrett Yee, who has proven himself in making difficult decisions with courage and always a spirit of fairness for the greater good of the community."
During college, Garrett intended to pursue becoming a teacher, and in fact, took and passed the California Basic Educational Skills Test. Although Garrett ultimately pursued a career in the insurance industry, he still intends to become a classroom instructor some day. In the meantime, he teaches continuing education courses to insurance industry professionals.
Position Paper 2
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