BY Aliyah Allen
Joanna Flores, a political science professor and an active member in the City of Commerce, is running for a seat on the Montebello School Board.
Flores has a history of helping her students. Before becoming a professor, she was a former admissions and financial aid counselor.
She graduated from the University of Southern California with a B.A in Political Science and Spanish Literature.
Flores also received her master’s degree in Public Policy and Social Work.
To reach out to her community, Flores developed the program SEAgoes2college.
The purpose of the program is to motivate Southeast Los Angeles County residents to pursue a higher education.
With many approaches to getting students to reach higher learning, she wants to be the educator for the school board to help increase educational experiences.
The Montebello School District wants to increasing the college enrollment and Flores to contribute to their goal.
The school district wants more students to attend college.
“Montebello has a 94 percent graduation rate and 30 percent college enrollment,” Flores said.
Her goal is not only to increase the enrollments, but to get students to attend four-year universities. Flores wants students to be motivated and have the support that they deserve to excel in the future.
One way she believes will help students attend college is to get more parent involvement. “We need more collaborative effort with parents,” Flores said.
Parents can be a positive role model in their child’s lives. Flores wants to develop parent leadership academics to advance children’s and parents’ education.
Another step she would take is to provide more training for teachers. Flores wants to have the necessary tools and support to nurture success in the classroom.
Students need the best tools for higher education.The students’ test scores have been low over the past years. “We need to go back and look at each grade level curriculum and provide additional support for teachers,” Flores said.
She also wants to strengthen and enhance special education services.
Some important factors in order to reach this goal are the referral process and timeline to evaluate students with special needs.
Flores would also like to budget more efficiently for the school. She has always been an active member in the City of Commerce and would like to see changes made in the school district.
During the campaign, Flores has been able to connect with her community in a positive way.
“I have been an active member in the community and running a campaign has been an exciting process,” Flores said.
She has been able to form bonds with different people in the community during her campaign. ” The process has been a learning experience,” said Flores.
Flores also has a strong support team of people whom she helped in the past. Flores wants to give a voice and college opportunities to students.
“This has been a humbling process to get to know the parents and students in a more personal way,” Flores said.
“Flores created the Seagoes2college program and she was willing to do it without a title and without a paycheck. That is an example of why she should be elected,” Denise Robles said.
Robles has known Flores since she served under Robles as a community service commissioner. “She will impact thousands of students by being on the board,” Robles said.
Not many people will use their own time to support others. “Flores is a very humble professional woman,” Robles said.
The election will take place on Nov. 3. Four candidates will be on the ballot for the election.
“I will either find out that day who won or it can take up to three weeks,” Flores said.
Flores hopes that she won’t have to wait that long for the results. Every hour on the election day ratings will be shown.