The Riverside-Brookfield Landmark sent questionnaires to each person running for public office in 2023. The Landmark’s questions are in bold and the candidate’s responses are below.

Salina Claps | Provided

Name: Salina Claps

Age: 41

Previous Political Experience: none

Previous/Current Community Involvement: volunteer coach, Riverside Parks & Recreation; volunteer coach, Riverside Little League; volunteer, Central Elementary School PTO; mentor, Girls Who Invest

Occupation: Investment analyst

Education: B.B.A., University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

1. Why are you running for the District 96 School Board? 

I have two children attending a District 96 school and am passionate about the education of our community’s youth.  I am excited to help ensure that our district’s resources are most efficiently utilized to create environments that inspire a love of learning and parent engagement.  District 96 serves a wonderful community, and I’m enthusiastic about the opportunity to elevate the community’s perspective alongside the existing board to influence financial policy, curriculum development and resource allocation.

2. What experience and perspectives would you bring to the position and how would they be valuable as an elected official? 

Growing up, I observed how socioeconomic inequality in my community impacted educational and eventual professional outcomes.  My family benefitted from additional resource allocation across the spectrum of special and accelerated educational programs.  I believe the formative experiences of my education have relevant application to present growth opportunities within District 96.  From my professional experience as an investment analyst, I offer an analytical perspective, passion for lifelong learning, research and fact gathering skills, a desire to participate in rational, disciplined decision making and a love for building and developing teams with diverse perspectives.

3. What do you believe are some of the greatest challenges facing District 96? 

Over the past year, within District 96 there has been thoughtful dialogue and information gathering aimed at understanding factors impacting student achievement and family engagement.  I believe there is an opportunity for District 96 to use this understanding to strengthen family and educator partnerships and develop and implement practical applications to promote higher levels of achievement across all students.  I am keenly interested in ensuring that District 96’s students maintain access to leading technological resources and learning tools to support an equitable educational foundation that will encourage our students’ long-term academic success.