By CAPA JRC reporters Sophie Huang and Emily Jia
On Saturday, February 26th, at 8 PM, MCPS BOE (Montgomery County Board of Education) candidate Jay Guan launched his campaign on zoom. The meeting started off with Jay Guan talking about himself and his reasons for running, which was followed by endorsements from Guan’s friends and colleagues.
Jay Guan speaking during the kickoff.
Jay Guan got involved in education advocacy in 2016. He talked about how being brought up in a poor immigrant family gave him a “unique perspective” on what must be done to address the opportunity gap. Public education was his path to social mobility, and he wants to run to ensure that this social mobility path will still be available for future generations. His goal is for students in the MCPS public school system to be able to get the resources they need in order to compete in the rapidly evolving future.
As the father of a 1st grader at MCPS, Jay Guan argues that he has a first-person perspective of MCPS operations, giving him opportunities to listen in on conversations between teachers, parents, and other community members. He also has first-hand experience in engaging community members and finding common ground and wishes to see more Asian representation in the MCPS school board. Around 14% of the students at MCPS are Asian, and he argues that “the voice of that demographic needs to be heard.”
Jay Guan is also an aerospace engineer, which he believes will translate into rational and problem-solving approaches to situations. Therefore, he would be able to find relevant data, recognize what is most important, and then make informed decisions that benefit everyone. Furthermore, because of his background in STEM, he advocates for more STEM programs for kids–specifically, in the field of aviation.
Alan Cheung, the first Asian American to be on the MCPS school board, also took the mic to speak about Guan. He has known Jay Guan for a long time and stated that Jay is extremely competent for this spot, as he understands educational issues and has a good relationship with MCPS and various members of the BOE.
Alan Cheung in the meeting
Ultimately, Jay Guan has clear views on what he wants to do if elected for the MCPS BOE. According to his colleagues and friends, he has the traits and ideas that will cause him to be a successful BOE member who can hopefully make an impact.
This article was provided by Chinese American Parents Association Junior Reporter Club (CAPA JRC) with members who interviewed, audio recorded, wrote, translated, and video recorded. CAPA JRC has 25 Montgomery County middle to high school students. They have created a bilingual platform delivering news and serving the community.