Manikka Bowman

Manikka Bowman
2015 Candidate for Cambridge School Committee

Home address:
134 Reed St.
Cambridge, MA 02140

Contact information:
Tel: 857-209-4509

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Why I'm Running:
I am running for school committee because I'm capable, competent and qualified to lead.

Public education should be the institution that allows children from all backgrounds to unlock their talent and tap into their potential.

I understand the importance of quality education. Education is the bridge that allows kids to find pathways to opportunities. As someone who grew up in subsidized housing, it was a bridge for me, and I am committed to ensuring Cambridge Public Schools be a bridge of opportunity for all Cambridge children by tackling the following issues:

Universal pre-K
Investing in pre-K will stop the achievement gap before it starts. With a high tax base and an economically diverse student body, the City of Cambridge is in a unique position to be a leader in educational outcomes by creating Universal pre-K for all residents. Currently, Cambridge spends 27K per pupil. It is one of the highest student-spending ratios in the state. If money is not the issue, then what is? As the parent of a toddler and someone who has worked in early education policy, I understand the importance of investing in children during this developmental stage.

Supporting Administrators and Teachers
Educators are the solution, not the problem. Cambridge teachers and administrators are in the unique position of being in a resource rich district but having 47% of students classified as "High Needs". With close to half the school district classified this way, teachers and administrators are forced to manage issues of poverty, social stratification, language and race in addition to educating our children. These issues have a direct impact on how they are able to do their jobs. I want teachers and administrators to be a part of policy conversations and inform decision-making to address the unique make up of our district so we can improve academic outcomes for all students.

Supporting Minorities and Girls
As a school committee member, I will elevate the issues of girls, minorities and high needs families. Currently, 60% of the school district is minority and about half are female. As a School Committee member, I want students that face educational challenges to know they have a place in public life and Cambridge Public Schools. As a Black woman who has moved from being disadvantaged to the middle class, I believes it is important to have individuals from diverse backgrounds influencing policy at every level. Currently, there are no women of color on the school committee. It is no secret that women of color are underrepresented in public office. I am running because I fundamentally believe that must change.

CCTV candidate video (2015)

Page last updated Friday, October 30, 2015 8:38 AM Cambridge Candidates