(The following information is provided as a public service on behalf of the West Linn Alliance voter education campaign. All positions represented below are those of the candidate.)
Office Sought: State Senate District 13 (Wilsonville, Sherwood, Tigard, King City, Durham)
As a mom to three youth attending our public schools, and a two-term school board member, much of my advocacy has centered around our school communities. When the district failed to sustain a Spanish immersion program (2010) and instead cut it after only one year, I organized a group of moms and we worked for 2 years, successfully advocating for a Spanish-immersion K-12 program that has now been operating for 10 years. My motivation was to foster integration between the English speaking and Spanish speaking communities and increase academic success for native Spanish speakers.
When I was elected the first president of the Lowrie Primary PTA, I was intentional to create an ethnically diverse organization. Together we launched an International Fair, an event where all cultures from the school community could share information and customs. My efforts earned me the Oregon Local Leader of the Year Award (2015).
When it was time for the district to update the Comprehensive Human Sexuality Curriculum, some individuals began to claim that teaching students about gender identity and sexual orientation was immoral. I conducted grassroots outreach and organized the community to advocate on behalf of our LGBTQ+ youth. After months of bringing folks together, including incorporating student voices, the board unanimously adopted an updated curriculum that was inclusive of diverse gender identities and sexual orientation.
During my tenure on the school board, I added “disrupt systems of racism” to our district goal #1, making it explicit and intentional that this would be the work of the district. Since then the board has engaged in multiple diversity, equity and inclusion trainings, has led several multi-city equity summits, each school in the district has an equity plan, and there has been an increase in the intentional diversification of all levels of staff in our schools.
I led two capital bond campaigns in our district and have been active in awarding public contracts. I have advocated that we award bids to Minority/ Women/ Emerging Small Business certified businesses and have successfully moved the dial toward more equitable public bidding contract processes, including passing a policy that allows the board to implement community benefits agreements rather than be bound to a lowest competitive bidder process.
These are just a few examples of outcomes of my advocacy around diversity, equity and inclusion. If elected to the state senate, I will continue to generate outcomes, just on a larger scale.
Web Page: www.ChelseaKingForOregon.com