A retired teacher and life-long Alliance resident is among those vying for a seat on the Alliance City School Board of Education. Joyce Hawkins-Williams explained that she has lived in Alliance all her life and all of her children attended Alliance City Schools and noted some of her grandchildren do as well.
Hawkins-Williams is a retired educator after teaching in both the Canton City School District and the Alliance City School District where her focus was primarily in Special Education.
She is also currently a pastor-minister in the city of Alliance.
“I have a vested interest in education, period,” explained Hawkins-Williams. “Especially as I see the trend of the city kind of dictates the level of education that would be offered to our children. It seems we’re experiencing a little bit of a financial issue here in the town, but I want to make sure our schools are still meeting the need of the children.”
She detailed that among her goals if elected for her first term, she would like to see more direction toward family inclusion and hopes for an opportunity to be a voice for classroom teachers.
“I still have an urgency to want to be a part of it and try to do my part to try and ensure and gain the confidence of voters, that I will be an advocate for what needs to be done in these schools, continue to do what we’re doing and add more to it.”
Hawkins-Williams acknowledged the need to meet state requirements but stressed there is a way to do it that is best for teachers and their students.
“I consider myself as a life-long learner and I just want to continue to generate that energy towards the schools.”
Proper equipment and resources available to students throughout the district is also a priority Hawkins-Williams noted to Newsymom.com as well as considering what happens once the school day ends.
“What can we do beyond the school hours to continue to gain the confidence of the parents or guardians? I want to make sure students stay engaged and want to learn and want to move forward,” she explained.
“I would like to generate most of my energy to engage the community, especially in the home with the school itself and try to educate the caregivers as to what is expected of their child and to try to have their support more and what can we do to help them support us more.”
A voice for classroom teachers was another area Hawkins-Williams mentioned as being a priority for her.
“Knowing that sometimes they’re not heard and sometimes they’re teaching to the test when they’re not getting across their passion to educate children,” she explained. “But, still say within guidelines of course, but still give them a voice in saying this doesn’t work, this is working and try to be a part of that piece.”
Hawkins Williams added that she doesn’t see problems, but rather opportunities to take on a new challenge.
“And I’m ready for that challenge.”
Michaela Madison Reporting
John Gasparik – Did not return a message seeking comment.
William L. Koch – Did not return a message seeking comment.