Keilley Meng

District: Garvey
Position Seeking: Governing Board Member

Question 1: Please share a meaningful experience you had with art (visual, dance, drama, music, media arts) while growing up.

I was very fortunate to grow up in a very Arts-rich district. I had choir for both 7th and 8th grade year. I became the music director’s assistant for our first musical ever. I have served as a coordinator for several Arts functions, such as the well-attended Dinner & a Show, and a stage manager and backstage personnel coordinator for every musical since 2010. I did everything from building the set to putting on makeup and put together various costumes.

Question 2: What kind of creative solutions would you suggest to support student outcomes such as English language development, closing the achievement gap, and preparation for college and/or meaningful careers?

As I mentioned earlier, I was in choir for a couple years. However, before those years, I was labeled as an English Language Learner, and choir became the class that helped me the most with my pronunciations. I believe if our students were taught choir from a very young age, it will help them tremendously with English acquisition. Another solution that I have it having access to the Arts, especially music, because learning how to play an instrument helps the students development multitasking and cognitive skills that they can use in many different ways.

Question 3: What do you think should be the role of the School Board in ensuring that students have access to a broad range of study?

To me I believe that a school board member is a liaison between our community and school district. As a school board member, I will work with the other board members to discuss issues and understand their point of views, at the same time we will work with the superintendent to understand the concerns in the district. As an elected official we have a responsibility to take ALL voices into consideration. All stakeholders in our district need to have their voices heard and opinions validated in order to build a culture of collaboration.

Question 4: In light of the Local Control Funding Formula and development of district Local Control Accountability Plans (LCAPs), what are your creative solutions for achieving goals in the eight priority areas?

I have reviewed the LCAP plan in our district and have found many great funding ideas that were established, especially the plan-in-progress of hiring 4 music teachers for our elementary schools. We are also hiring 10 more teacher’s aids to help our lower grades (kinder-2nd). However, I have notice that we are short staff in our Human Resource Department which is the cause for our late and slow hiring process. I would focus on this issue first in order to get all of our art and music teachers into the classrooms as soon as possible.