Oct 20 2018

OPINION: Vote Julie Caskey: Lawyer and Child Advocate

As her other letters of support have already emphasized, Julie Caskey has an extensive volunteer record and an incredible commitment to the Piedmont schools and community. But I write to encourage Piedmont residents to vote for Julie because the Piedmont School Board needs her expertise in two specific areas: her legal expertise and the expertise she brings as a current parent of elementary, middle, and high school children.
First, Julie will be the only lawyer on the Piedmont School Board.     I met Julie in New York City over twenty years ago, when she was working as an attorney for the Legal Aid Society’s Juvenile Rights Division, and also waiting tables to make ends meet. As a Columbia Law School graduate, Julie could have made triple her legal aid salary at a big law firm, but Julie’s commitment was to advancing the public interest. Throughout her legal career as a children’s advocate, as an immigration lawyer, and as a staff attorney for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Julie has served the public and advocated on behalf of those less fortunate. As a lawyer, Julie will bring to the Piedmont School Board a special set of analytical and problem-solving skills. She is singularly qualified to identify potential risk and liability, understand process, review policy, and navigate the legal issues that will inevitably arise.
In addition, as a parent of three children under the age of five, I am especially aware of the importance of a current elementary and middle school parent being on the Piedmont School Board. No existing school board members — and no 2018 school board candidates — are parents to elementary or middle school children. By contrast, Julie is a parent to four Piedmont schoolchildren: one at Beach, two at PMS, and one at PHS. Julie’s children will be in the Piedmont schools for her entire four-year term. She understands the issues facing her elementary and middle school children and their teachers, as well as the larger policy needs facing the district. With evolving and challenging issues that have significance to me as a parent of very young children — like Chromebook and social media policies in middle school, and art/library/music hours in the elementary years — Piedmont needs someone on its School Board who is in the parenting trenches with younger children. Julie is the only candidate who can meet that need.
For these reasons, Julie has my firmest support, and I encourage Piedmont voters to support Julie as well.
Annie Reding, Piedmont Resident

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