Albuquerque Public Schools must empower parents and students

My name is Michaela Chavez and I am a mother and wife in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Like many of you concerned parents, I have watched the situation in our schools since the COVID Crisis started in March 2020. And like you, I was not sure how to juggle the day-to-day demands of home, children, job, etc. When Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham decided to close all schools in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the new rules suddenly thrust into my life were daunting. 

Like all parents, I was concerned for my children’s safety, and I agreed that we should have “15 days to flatten the curve” while we learned more about the Novel Coronavirus to understand the severity of the situation. I wanted some consistency and leadership. In that respect, the Governor’s Office and the APS Board have utterly failed.  

In March of 2021, we are now one year after “15 Days to flatten the Curve.” We are still not sure how our children will weather this storm and get back to any semblance of normalcy. Unlike in March 2020, at the beginning of the pandemic, we have one year of dedicated research, tireless efforts in fighting COVID-19, and multiple effective vaccines. 

Plainly stated, our kids—who are our greatest asset and resource—must be given the option to go back to the classroom. They want to go back and be with their friends and get back to the business of a normal life. The big takeaway from this year-long crisis is this: Our state and country need decisive leadership, and that starts here in Albuquerque and our beloved state of New Mexico. 

I believe that rather than listening to the teacher’s unions, Albuquerque Public Schools must empower parents and students with the option to attend in-person classes, with the option of virtual (online) classes for parents who believe their students will be most successful with at-home learning.  

I am seeking to become the Republican nominee for Congress in New Mexico’s First Congressional District in the Special Election to replace Deb Haaland because I believe in returning the power to New Mexico’s People. I can tell you this: if you choose me as your candidate for Congress, I will do everything I can do at the federal level to ensure our children get the money needed to broaden their education, follow-up at the local and state level, and most of all: not leave such an important duty in the hands of bureaucrats, special interests and other parties that only want to feather their own nests while denuding ours. It’s time for some “common sense” solutions and elected officials who will finally put the needs and concerns of New Mexicans first. 

Michaela Chavez is the current Bernalillo County GOP Ward 17 Chair and was the 2020 Republican Nominee for the New Mexico State Senate in District 13.

Opinions expressed by Piñon Post contributors do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of the publication or its editorial staff. Submit an op-ed to the Piñon Post at news@pinonpost.com.

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