Rafael Jacobo Candidate for the Cedar Rapids School Board

I feel fortunate and excited to have an opportunity to run for the CRCSD school board and to potentially represent countless parents and community members.


I was born in East Los Angeles and attended elementary school in El Monte, California; I knew Iowa as the place where the Basic Skills Tests originated. In 1989, my family moved to Winterset, Iowa, where I attended elementary through high school. I later attended and graduated from the University of Iowa with the desire to do something in education.

I ended up not being an educator, but in 2006 my oldest son started school at Garfield Elementary and volunteer opportunities allowed me to make a contribution to the CRCSD. Since that time, my family and I have been aware of and involved with opportunities in schools and the district not just for parents/guardians/siblings/etc., but for community members with a desire to share their talents.

Volunteer opportunities have been wide ranging and include: the school board, district committees, PTA and helping with school events/functions, and meeting with individual students in a classroom to do extra reading or math. Every building (from support staff to Administrators) has always welcomed, been appreciative of, and aided volunteer efforts to support and benefit students. Involved parent and community volunteers provide real-time feedback to teachers and administrators on what’s working and what can be improved.

Not all parents and community members have the availability to be involved with district or school improvement planning processes. As such, active parental/community engagement and school board member visibility needs to be a priority. This can be accomplished by maintaining a year-round presence outside of formal board meetings at events throughout district buildings as well as in the community (e.g. events in various parts of the city, at the public library, NewBo, and the farmers market).

By encouraging informal parental/community engagement, there will be feedback on direction for our district as well as perspective on difficult topics like budgets, class sizes, and student equity. If elected, I will be considerate of all points of view to help identify solutions and able to act without bias or a personal agenda. I plan to collaborate to determine the impact/relevance of programming/initiatives and support changes or enhancements when and where needed (including consideration of partnerships) to maximize benefit/value to students and stakeholders and to fulfill the district vision of excellence for all.

• For more information email: JacoboforSchoolBoard@outlook.com



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