1040 Whitley Ave., Corcoran CA 93212   |   Phone: (559) 992-3115

Jun 6, 2019 | Featured News | 0 comments

School board Trustee Sammy Ramirez wants kids to succeed

Featured News | 0 comments

Written by Tina Botill

Sammy Ramirez

The chance for every child to have the opportunity to succeed is the reason Sammy Ramirez chose to serve on the Corcoran Unified School District’s school board.

The chance for every child to have the opportunity to succeed is the reason Sammy Ramirez chose to serve on the Corcoran Unified School District’s school board.

Sammy believes that education is the foundation for a successful future and that all children deserve a hostile free safe learning environment, free education, and to be treated with respect and dignity. It is these beliefs that help him make decisions that will be beneficial for the students of Corcoran Unified School District, according to his bio on the district’s website.

Born and raised in Corcoran, Sammy and his wife, Susan both attended Corcoran schools as did his six children and Susan is a teacher at John C. Fremont School.

Sammy went on to attend college and majored in criminal justice. He began his career with the Department of Corrections in 1988 as a correctional officer. In 1997 he became a Sergeant and worked at the correctional training facility in Soledad. A year later, in 1998 he transferred back to Corcoran and in March of 2001 he promoted to Correctional Lieutenant. He went to further advance in his career in December of 2014 when he became a special agent with the Office of Internal Affairs in Bakersfield. And, although he retired in December of 2016 he goes back part-time whenever they call him, Sammy said.

Serving on the local school board and his eight grandbabies keep him busy. Sammy also recently went on a cross country trip; bought a fifth wheel and plans to do some traveling and camping in the near future.

He is active in community affairs and is involved with the Knights of Columbus, is currently the vice-president of the National Latino Peace Officers Association which provides scholarships to local students. He is also active with the California Correctional Peace Officers Association and the Kings County Latino Round Table. He is also an active member of the Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church.

Sammy was elected to the Corcoran school board in 2016 for a four-year term. His duties as a trustee include attending board meetings and sitting on sub-committees. Sammy is currently on the curriculum sub-committee which reviews current and proposed curriculum for the district. He is also on the facilities sub-committee which involves the master plan, and renovation of all facilities in the district including modernization.

His goals as a board member is to see improvement in state test scores.

“They aren’t great and I want to work on improving the scores. I’d say it’s a top priority. I would also like to improve the graduation rate. It’s pretty high already but it could be better. I just want all kids to have an opportunity to succeed,” Ramirez noted.

The kids are most important to Ramirez; he wants to do everything he can to help them succeed, he says. He wants every single one of them to have a chance—to have the opportunity.

However, as part of serving as a trustee he says that as a single board member he does what he can when he can but he and his fellow trustees make decisions as a unit and there are many things that help them make those decisions.

“The most difficult thing is that when people bring issues to my attention they think I as a single board member can change things. But everything is a board decision. We make a decision as a board. We can bring it to the superintendent’s attention to get it resolved but as in all things there are by-laws we have, state laws and regulations and even some that prevent me from saying anything when they bring an issue to me,” Sammy said.

However, he said he wants people to know that he and the other trustees always have the best interests of the students in mind.

Other things Sammy is passionate about is parent participation and transparency with the school district.

“I think if parents were more involved with kids the kids would do better,” Sammy added. “And, transparency with the school district–I think parents need to be able to go ask questions and get answers and I think the district does provide that. It’s a public entity and taxpayers need to be able to see what’s going on.”

Another big issue for Sammy is modernization of the local schools.

“I think it shows a sense of pride for everyone. Students want to be there and want to come to school and they are in a safe learning environment,” Sammy said.

He is also very happy with the CTE (Career Technical Education) program which provides Corcoran students with the academic and technical skills, knowledge and training necessary to succeed in future careers; and the purchase of the property on Dairy Avenue.

“CTE is great. Not all kids are made to go to college. CTE may be adding more which is great to give kids more options. Also, there will be the addition of the new CTE building which will go where the current grounds shop is on the high school campus,” Ramirez commented. “Purchasing the land on Dairy Avenue was another highlight. The grounds shop will find a temporary home there until they get a permanent home and that should be occurring this summer. The future of the land on Dairy Avenue will include softball and soccer fields but that will be sometime in the future.”

Other great things happening within the school district, according to Ramirez is the maintenance yard by the district office will be renovated using a grant from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District.

“It’s currently all dirt and the grant will be used to bring it up to pollution standards, to expand the lot, and add new fencing. They will also add new security cameras,” Sammy noted.

Ramirez is excited about the future of the Corcoran School District and where it’s headed. He speaks about Corcoran with pride and says he’s proud of the local schools and he’s is willing to listen as a trustee.

“I think we have a wonderful staff of teachers who are dedicated. I think the teachers care about the students here in Corcoran and their work is endless,” Sammy added. “I’m willing to listen to anyone regarding the kids in Corcoran. All I want is for all the students to get a good education and have a chance to succeed.”

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