Elected in November 2014, Valerie Cuevas is the first Latina publicly elected to the West Contra Costa Unified School District Board of Education. In 2017, she was unanimously selected as President of the Board marking the first time a Latina/o has held the position. West Contra Costa Unified has 54 schools serving approximately 30,000 children seventy-five percent of whom are English learners, low-income or foster youth students.
Upon becoming WCCUSD Board President, she stated:
PROUD TO BE SUPPORTED BY WCCUSD STUDENTS, FAMILIES, SITE LEADERS, CLASSIFIED STAFF, AND CLASSROOM TEACHERS!!!
Valerie asks for your vote to ensure we keep investing in what matters most– OUR PEOPLE, from our students to our district employees to our local communities. Over the past 4 years, Valerie has championed increased ACADEMIC SUPPORTS for students, delivered MORE FUNDS to our local schools, created COMPETITIVE SALARIES for hardworking teachers and staff, passed a comprehensive POSITIVE SCHOOL CLIMATE policy, and improved ACCOUNTABILITY of the school bond/construction program.
Valerie is a proven leader and in February 2018, Michael Peritz, a retired WCCUSD educator with Standard Secondary, Vocational, and Special Ed Credentials; a father, grandfather, and uncle of successful WCCUSD students; and a Richmond and West County Unified School District advocate since 1966 wrote this about her:
… We have had four years to watch her in action and see her evolve. For 2018, I and many of my community colleagues encourage her to run for re-election; I will support her candidacy
and ask others to join me in voting for her. In the style of David Letterman, I offer Ten Reasons to Vote for Val Cuevas:
- She is a genuine good listener.
- She is proactive.
- She supports her opinions with facts and logic.
- She is a strong leader.
- She understands how to use the Brown Act to promote communication.
- She runs efficient meetings.
- She is open-minded.
- She is empathetic and compassionate.
- She is the model of civility.
- She has earned her position helping the students and families of
West County who continue to need her.”
A third-generation Californian, Valerie Cuevas is the oldest of six kids raised in a hardworking union family. She grew up in a blue-collar neighborhood just like the Richmond community she calls home. From early learning in Head Start — the federally funded program for low-income preschoolers — to testing into the state’s Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) program, Valerie is a proud product of California’s public education system.
A staunch advocate for kids, she is frequently featured in the media for her respected expertise and education equity advocacy. Currently a non-profit executive tasked with supporting integrated literacy and mathematics instruction, Valerie previously held student affairs positions at various 2- and 4-year colleges and universities across the state where she was a member of the California State University Employees Union (CSUEU). She holds dual bachelor’s degrees from the University of Southern California and a master’s degree in Educational Psychology, Administration and Counseling from California State University, Long Beach.