Welcome to another episode of Dear Fort Collins, where we dive deep into the issues that matter to our community. In this episode, we have the pleasure of interviewing Jessica Zamora, a candidate for the Poudre School District (PSD) Board in District G. As an experienced educator and a dedicated parent, Jessica brings a distinct perspective to the table. Our conversation touches upon her enthusiasm for education, her vision for the district, and the challenges she aims to tackle.
A Passion for Education and Community
Jessica Zamora’s journey into the world of education began almost 15 years ago. With a diverse background in teaching, including high school, GED, and K-12 tutoring, she has dedicated her career to shaping young minds. As a mother of two children, she is deeply invested in ensuring that the education system in Fort Collins continues to thrive for generations to come.
“I just want to make sure that the education that I know they’re currently receiving continues to be what’s there for years and years to come, long after they’re out of our system,” Jessica explains. Her commitment to ensuring high-quality education is a driving factor in her candidacy for the PSD Board.
Tackling Enrollment and School Boundaries
One of the pressing issues facing the Poudre School District is enrollment and school boundaries. Jessica acknowledges that this is a challenging topic that requires bold leadership and community involvement. She emphasizes the importance of honoring the needs of students, families, and educators while also being fiscally responsible.
“We can’t just keep schools open just because it makes us feel good. We actually have to do that with fiscal responsibility too,” Jessica asserts. She advocates for open dialogue to find solutions that both uphold the district’s esteemed programs and maintain financial health.
A Unique Perspective and Qualifications
Jessica Zamora stands out as a candidate due to her comprehensive teaching background and her experience as a parent. Her time in the classroom has given her insight into the hurdles educators and students face. As a parent, she has a personal connection to the school communities and understands family concerns.
“I understand what it feels like to know that your school might need to adjust,” Jessica shares. She has witnessed firsthand the impact of potential school consolidations and understands the importance of trust and community input in making difficult decisions. Her background in engineering also provides her with robust problem-solving skills, which she applies to complex issues with a solution-oriented approach.
Inspired by a Role Model in Public Service
When asked about her role model in the realm of public service, Jessica looks to Jody Shadduck-McNally. She admires Jody’s ability to stay informed about various municipalities, school districts, and county matters while maintaining empathy and compassion for all individuals, regardless of their beliefs or values.
“I aspire to have those same characteristics. I aspire for that to be how I’m seen by our community,” Jessica says. She recognizes the importance of being well-informed and engaging with all community members to make decisions that truly represent their interests.
The Power of a Hug
In a lighthearted moment, Jessica reveals her “superpower” – giving great hugs. While it may seem cheesy, she believes that a warm embrace can help alleviate tension and anxiety, allowing people to focus on problem-solving and working together for the greater good.
“If I can just release some of the tension from those decisions so that we get to the brass tacks of problem-solving… I would love to give literally every person in our community a deep hug to just be like, ‘Hey, let’s center and just get to work,'” Jessica expresses.
Trusting the Community and Embracing Input
One piece of advice that Jessica has received, and continues to remind herself of, is to trust the community. As a board member, she understands the importance of considering the perspectives and detailed information provided by various stakeholders. While she may have access to a broader picture, she recognizes that community members have valuable insights into how decisions will impact their schools and families.
“We have to make sure we’re looking at the focus pieces as well as those big picture ideas,” Jessica emphasizes. By embracing input from all corners of the community, she believes the district can make well-rounded decisions that honor the needs of students and families.
Learn More and Get Involved
To learn more about Jessica Zamora’s campaign for the Poudre School District Board, visit her website at jessicazamora.com. She also encourages community members to reach out with any specific questions or concerns they may have.
Remember, your vote matters. Take the time to research the candidates and make an informed choice when you go to the ballot. Thank you for joining us on Dear Fort Collins. Stay tuned for more interviews with city council and school board candidates, as we strive to make you a more informed neighbor of Fort Collins.