Sunday, May 27 , 2018, 7:05 am | Fair 49º


Laura Capps Announces Candidacy for Santa Barbara School Board

Laura Capps
Laura Capps

Laura Capps, the daughter of retiring Congresswoman Lois Capps, announced Tuesday that she is seeking a seat on the Santa Barbara Unified School District Board of Education.

Capps, 43, who grew up in Santa Barbara and returned to town three years ago after a lengthy career in Washington, D.C., made the announcement in a video posted online (scroll down to see the video).

Capps said her run was motivated in large part by her son, Oscar, who starts kindergarten in the fall Roosevelt School, the same school that Capps attended as a child.

“I am running for Santa Barbara school board to ensure that every student has the chance to succeed," Capps said in a press release. "As a graduate of our strong public school system, I am grateful for all the opportunities this education has given me.

"Yet we must do more. We need to close the achievement gap, better prepare our students for success, give our teachers the tools they need, and ensure that no student goes hungry."

If elected to the school board, Capps told Noozhawk, she hopes to focus on narrowing the achievement gap among the district's students, and also work to ensure that no child goes to school hungry.

Three seats on the school board will be open in the November election, including those held by Ed Heron, Gayle Eidelson, and Pedro Paz.

Heron has said he does not plan to seek a third 4-year term, so there will be at least one open seat.

Capps, a graduate of UC Berkeley who has her own public relations and communications business, previously worked as a speech writer for President Bill Clinton, and as an aide to the late U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy.

Rumors that Capps would run for the school board have been circulating locally since she announced last year that she would not seek her mother’s seat in Congress, preferring to raise her son in Santa Barbara.

Capps already has locked up several endorsements, including former state Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell; school board members Monique Limón and Kate Parker; John Houchin, president of the Santa Barbara Teachers Association ; state Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson; and Santa Barbara County supervisors Salud Carbajal and Janet Wolf.

Capps said she planned to attend Tuesday night's school board meeting to announce her candidacy during the public-comment period. The board meets at 6:30 p.m. at district headquarters, 720 Santa Barbara St.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Laura Capps for School Board from MENTALiTY on Vimeo.

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