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School board candidate Yadi Cardenas wants more parents engaged in education

Yadi Cardenas wants to see more parents engaged in their children’s education and to see students fully prepared for life after graduation.

Cardenas, 44, is seeking a seat on the Port Arthur Independent School District board of trustees.

The stay-at-home mother is busy full-time with four children in the district and one in college: a senior at Memorial High School, a junior at Woodrow Wilson Early College High School, a sixth grader at Thomas Jefferson Middle School, first grader at Tyrrell Elementary School and a daughter at Texas Southern University who is working as a substitute teacher in PAISD with an expected graduation date in 2023.

“I am running for school board because I feel it is imperative and important for parents to be engaged in their children’s education,” Cardenas said.

Cardenas is a longtime volunteer at her children’s schools and feels she can contribute in making a difference.

Parental engagement, presentation and the process of children’s education are important and essential for the success of students and the school district, she said, adding parental involvement is high in neighboring districts.

She also feels more should be done for students other than a push to get them to graduate and that the students are not being educated to continue to higher education or prepared for the challenges of life.

Cardenas said she has served as president of the band booster club at Memorial High School and is involved in the PTA at TJMS as well as helping with school district registration. She also has done work with the homeless.

When asked why she is the most qualified candidate for the spot, she said the question should be how could she best serve the students.

“I understand what it is to have a child go from preschool to graduation. I’ve seen what happens to kids when they graduate,” she said. “I’ve been a parent involved for many years and see we lack many things we need to change and I understand also what school districts go through, what employees go through. A lot of them have two jobs to make ends meet.”

Cardenas wants parents of special needs children to know she understands what they are going through as she too has a special needs child.

Cardenas ran unsuccessfully for the Position 7 seat on Port Arthur City Council in 2020.

There are three, 3-year seats and the unexpired 1-year term left vacated by the Rev. Donald R. Frank Sr. who left the school board and earned a seat on Port Arthur City Council.

Those seeking full terms include incumbents Brandon Bartie, Deborah Ambroise and Lloyd Marie Johnson.

Newcomers vying for the full term seats are Taylor Getwood, Cardenas and Kimberly Wycoff.

Seeking the 1-year term are Dianne Brown and Joe Escobedo.

Early voting runs from April 19 to April 27.

May 1 is Election Day.

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