Community for Excellent Public Schools (CEPS) proudly endorses school board candidates Ben Allen, José Escarce and Maria Leon Vazquez for re-election this November. Each of these three incumbents has done an exceptional job of ensuring that all students in our district have access to an excellent education.

With their strong focus on representing every student in Santa Monica-Malibu schools, they have shown extraordinary leadership in focusing goals for the district, in particular in helping support initiatives to close the achievement gap. This targeted effort is paying off; Santa Monica-Malibu schools have just seen a significant rise in student test scores. Under their leadership, the Academic Performance Index (API) for every school, including our Title I schools, has surpassed the state’s benchmark of 800.

In addition to keeping a keen eye on programmatic integrity, Dr. Escarce, Ms. Leon Vazquez and Mr. Allen have, at the same time, provided difficult leadership in dealing with the largest funding cuts to education from Sacramento in the history of California’s public schools. They have continued to put students first and, despite devastating funding cuts, these Board of Education members have managed to protect critical programs important to students’ well-rounded education; from college-level classes in our high schools to our high quality music and arts programs. The efforts of these three dedicated school board members on behalf of all students in Santa Monica and Malibu are well recognized in our communities.

For these reasons, Community for Excellent Public Schools, along with so many education leaders throughout our school district, strongly support Ben Allen, José Escarce and Maria Leon Vazquez for re-election to the Santa Monica-Malibu Board of Education.


Rebecca Kennerly

Chair, Community for Excellent Public Schools

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