Santa Clara County Voter's Guide On Children's Issues

Evergreen School District

Madan Bellam

We need to give our children the academic foundation and skills that will allow them to prosper in our dramatically changing technological world. This requires opportunity, inclusion, fairness, and kindness for all children.

  1. Taking into consideration the profound impact of COVID-19 and the expanded movement for racial justice and equity, what do you think are the top three issues affecting our children and families and how do you propose to address them?

    I believe that mental and emotional health of our families, the digital divide and inequitable access to technology resources in this digital world, and continuing economic instability are some of the most salient issues affecting our children and families right now. I support encouraging sustained outreach by community groups, religious groups, friends, neighbors, etc. to help improve people’s mental health and reduce social isolation, providing low-cost technology access and training, and advocating for living wage legislation and subsidized medical insurance for everyone.

  2. How will the priorities you addressed in the first question be reflected in the way that you approach the budget process?

    As a member of the Evergreen School Board, I would set priorities to budget resources supporting meals for students, mental health services, providing digital access to families in need, and working with families to help address work-related childcare needs.

  3. What steps will you take to address the high cost and lack of availability of quality child care and preschool programs in our communities, especially for low-income children and English language learners?

    I would take steps towards setting policy and School Board focus on enabling service providers to equitably access school district facilities and resources to address the lack of quality child care and preschool programs in our communities.

  4. What steps will you take to improve inclusion and outcomes for children with special needs or with disabilities?

    I would advocate for increasing the available resources provided by the state government for children with special needs and, where possible, include these children in mainstream education spaces.

  5. Much of the student achievement gap has been linked to the "opportunity gap" that low-income children and children of color experience, including lack of access to healthy food, preschool, tutors and enrichment activities. If elected, what steps will you take to address this issue?

    If elected, I would support providing engaging, enriching low cost services for families that need it. This includes building and facilitating an environment and culture of high expectations for our children’s academic achievement.