I’m Sarah Sorensen, I’m an experienced public education advocate with a track record of speaking up for students, families, teachers and school workers. I am the mother of a 5th grader at Bonham Academy and, for the past six years, I have been an active parent volunteer serving as PTA Vice President, President and as a member of our school’s charter writing committee. I am currently Vice President of the Lavaca Neighborhood Association. I have a rich and varied background in public policy research, advocacy, organizing, coalition building and project management. I have nearly a decade of experience working as a legislative analyst for the Chair of the Higher Education Committee in the New York State Assembly. I have been proud to call San Antonio my home for nearly seven years.
Together, with other SAISD parents and community members, I founded the Our Schools Coalition to promote a student-centered model of public education that promotes democratic values and is rooted in racial and economic justice; where all students, families, teachers and staff are valued and fully supported for success. We spoke out against the closure of Rodriguez Elementary and the way that the state accountability system, based on standardized testing, punishes students, schools and communities; we brought to light the district administration’s decision to enter into management agreements giving control of 18 of our public schools to non-profit corporations with no meaningful public input; and we called for greater transparency in the district budget process. We asked the questions that our elected board members refused to ask. We challenged policies that were developed behind closed doors and asked why our elected board members voted unanimously and unquestioningly with every single change that the superintendent proposed for our district.
It is time for new leadership in our district- leaders who are committed to democratic process and centering students, their families, education workers and the larger community in decision-making. I believe that public schools are the heart of our communities and the foundation of our democracy and that our society is only as strong as our public schools. Schools can and should be a model for a better world, and provide spaces where we can work together to build a just future for all people. This is why I have committed to running on the Schools Our Students Deserve platform.