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COMMUNITY VOICE IN EDUCATION

Many people don’t know that in order to have a balanced voice in education one has to have employees, regular agencies such as the PTA or PTO (Parent Organizations) but missing from the INVOLVEMENT EQUATION are the parents and consumers who struggle with issues that require a lot of time and/or more than just basic knowledge about how the educational system operates. 

The Salem School District and minority community benefited for a long time by the involvement that was initiated and energized by Eduardo Angulo.  Rarely does one see a person putting his own career and livelihood on hold to help someone else.  In fact the mission for helping the community was a family affair.  His wife Annalivia and later joined by his first child--where you saw one you saw all three!

Much can be said about the efforts of this family.  This kind of selfless work if demonstrated within an employee circle would receive commendations perhaps even a financial award to enhance and celebrate what is being done.  But those people served by Eduardo’s team don’t have the resources that employee groups had in the early 1970’s or almost one generation (12 school- years) ago.

Additionally, the media seems to connect less with efforts such as those demonstrated by Eduardo and the group he created and called the Salem-Keizer Education Coalition.  With his distinct voice, permanent smile and energy that seem not to dissipate and persuasive skills he is one of our contemporary models of community involvement.

His efforts during the 2003 Parent Conference when more than 300 adults and children were united is one example of his effectiveness.

More than 300+ people attended a conference centering on “Parent Rights and Responsibilities.

Eduardo's professional career on hold no more.  Today, Eduardo is practicing what he has been preaching..offering an effective education choice for parents who wish to explore a different mode of learning and participation.  On the negative side there is very little activity at the community level to generate others leaders who can fill the shoes his shoes.

Our community needs more people like Eduardo Angulo.  As his last name implies with an accent on the “Á”..it would describe his approach..always viendo el mejor Ángulo para proceder.

My own opinion and perception of the present “Hispanohablantes” is that their expectations for themselves and the system are low.  Since most of the families are either foreign born or perhaps don’t have their resident documents in order, they fear confrontation and they are also easy to please. Hablo con la verdad porque lo veo por donde quiera.  Sin el cambio interno no puede realizar un cambio externo.  Eduardo Angulo is a rare breed.  GRACIAS POR PROVEER UNA PARTE DE TU VIDA a nuestra comunidad Hispana de Oregon.

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