Jamie Yee Hintzke, candidate for Pleasanton School Board
Jamie Yee Hintzke is an incumbent School Board member. Her website is at https://jamiehintzke.com/
1- What have been the biggest challenges facing your School District and how did you tackle them?
The biggest challenge for our school district is adequate funding and being able to pass a bond. The last bond was passed in 1998.
I am active with my organization, CA School Boards Association and have joined their efforts to advocate for adequate funding as well as continuing to meet regularly with our legislators to help them understand the needs of our school district.
To pass a bond the school district needs to educate and build trust in the community to pass a bond measure. I have been part of the effort to push for more transparency and improved communication. I believe it is better over the last 8 years that I have been in office.
2 – Do you believe there are systemic problems with racial/sexual/gender-based or other discrimination in your district’s schools? What have you done to address them and how will you address them in the future?
I do not feel there is a wide-spread problem, however our community is changing.
In past years, I have made my opinions known to the staff that we needed to be inclusive and ensure that the 2013 AB 1266 bill had a board policy in our district to support the new law and changes to the CA ED Code. In 2014, I initiated and was the moderator for a workshop at the CA School Board Association annual conference on understanding and implementing AB 1266. I invited Gender Spectrum and a student services director from Mt. Diablo USD to present. We discussed the issues, best practices and highlighted the policy from my district and how it was adopted with no controversy and Mt. Diablo’s staff training on gender. It was very well-attended and received.
I also introduced Caitlyn Ryan, SF State Professor and E.D. for the Family Acceptance Project to speak in our district. The event was hosted by both High School’s GSA Clubs. Over 150 parents, staff and students attended the presentation and was very received.
3 – Do you believe the school-to-prison pipeline is operational in your School District? What have you done and/or propose to do to close it down?
No, I do not believe our school district contributes to the school-to-prison pipeline. Since 2008 when I was first elected,I pushed back hard on the staff in regards to discipline, expulsions and suspensions. We need to look at root causes and support the student and family to ensure the student will meet their educational goals. We have had a decline to zero expulsions.
I have been the sole board member who has pushed for restorative practices to become part of the school culture. It is a work in progress, but there is progress!! I feel that my advocacy in this area has definitely changed the culture and practice in my school district.
4 – Have you supported having police officers on campus? Why or why not?
Our School District has enjoyed a long-time positive relationship with our City and the Police Department. The City funds School Resource Officers at our school sites. It works because there is good communication and a shared understanding of expectations. It is a good partnership and they understand the fine line between helping kids and putting a kid into the “system”.
5 – What limits to students’ freedom of expression and privacy do you think are appropriate for public schools?
I think that the policy my board have adopt are appropriate.
Ultimately, it is important for all student to feel safe while at school.
6 – What do you think the School District should do to offer support to homeless, foster and impoverished children and children coming from violent homes?
PUSD has a staff person who works specifically with our Foster Youth and students who are being raised by someone other than their biological parents. We have about 240 students in this category of our 14,500 students.
We also have funded Spanish and Chinese speaking family liaisons that are specially trained to support families who made need to be connected to resources. Violent homes is a whole other topic. The information comes to us in different ways and each case is handled individually.
7 – What should the District do to tackle problems of truancy?
PUSD has almost zero truancy.
8 – Given the explosion of autism diagnoses, what is your plan to make sure children and their parents are getting the proper support?
Yes, the students with autism is growing. Our special ed department is trying to work with all families individually to determine the best educational plan to each student. It is a lot and there needs to be a bigger effort to work with many different systems to address the issue. Would love to take it on – it is definitely on my long list of things to do that I am interested in.
9 – Are you running as a Berniecrat?
Because of her experience, I am with HER.