VACAVILLE — Three passionate voices are louder and stronger than one – and it’s the power of three that Jeremy Jeffreys, Judi Ruggiero and Tracee Stacy are relying on to make a difference on the Vacaville School District board.
All three are running on a common platform for the four expiring board of education seats currently filled by David McCallum, Whit Whitman, Shelley Dally and Chris Flask.
The three running mates, all who graduated from Vacaville schools and have or have had children in the district, joined forces under an organized platform that calls for classroom-centered decision-making, communication and transparency and keeping kids safe. They recently pulled candidate papers with the intent of soon filing the official papers declaring their candidacies.
“All three of us realize that in order to make the kind of change we want, you need four votes,” said Jeffreys, a Green Valley Middle School teacher. “One person can’t do it.”
The three place importance on the upcoming $194 million facilities bond on the November ballot and its administration should it pass; priorities also include navigating the new Common Core state standards and how it will affect the upcoming generation and watching over the new way the districts and schools are funded through the Local Control Accountability Plans. Also important is the school district’s structural deficit, said Stacy, who said she thinks that is one of the most urgent issues to be tackled.
“We’re just very aligned in how we want to accomplish our goals,” said Stacy, a mental health educator and publisher of Prime Time Living magazine. “We all agree we need to take a hard look at the next three years.”
Ruggiero, who is a government teacher at Vanden High School, was spurred to run because of what she sees as the “average” moniker put upon the school community by groups she declined to mention specifically.
“I feel Vacaville is being treated as an average school district,” she said. “I believe we are an above-average school with above-average teachers, above-average administrators and above-average students.”
The three met when they applied for the provisional seat left vacant by Trustee Larry Mazzuca, who resigned a year ago after moving out of the area. Flask was selected for that seat. Stacy and Jeffreys got to know each other better on the Vacaville Public Education Foundation board when Jeffreys joined in October 2013. The three found themselves together again about a month ago on the new school bond committee that first met in June.
The three said it quickly became apparent they had a lot in common when it came to their themes and goals in running for the school board.
“It became crystal clear we had the same platforms,” Stacy said. “It kind of just happened very naturally.”
For more information on the running mates, visit their Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/ClassroomsFirst2014.
The four incumbents are also planning a run to retain their seats.
Reach Susan Winlow at 427-6955 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/swinlowdr.