Election 2017

Meet the candidate: Ali Muldrow for Madison School Board

Madison School Board candidate Ali Muldrow would focus on celebrating diversity and addressing disparities for marginalized communities within the district if elected in the upcoming municipal election.

Having grown up and attended school in the area, Ali Muldrow—who is running for seat six of Madison Metropolitan School District Board—is no stranger to the city.

Shaped by her own experience as a student at MMSD, Muldrow says she is compelled to make the school district at the “forefront of inclusion.”

In order to do that, she said, the school board needs to look at how faculty provides opportunities for people of all backgrounds. Crucial issues she would address, if elected, include confronting racial disparities head-on, making schools welcoming for LGBTQ students and advocating for the needs of differently abled students.

Muldrow said schools should focus on improving the futures of marginalized populations.

“There is no going back for the LGBTQ community or the black community or for folks who practice Islam or Jewish communities,” Muldrow said. “And I think that is what this campaign is about. How we go forward.”

Muldrow, reflecting on her own experience in school, emphasized the importance of attracting and maintaining quality teachers who are willing to invest in students.

She said an after-school tutor at Sherman Middle School showed her what it means for a teacher to stand up for a student. Muldrow recalled her excitement for receiving a “B” on a project the two had worked on together and her tutor telling her she deserved a better grade. The two of them marched down to the teacher’s classroom, where the tutor asked for the teacher to look over the project once again. The teacher realized Muldrow had completed everything asked of her and changed her grade to an “A.”

“It had never occurred to me that I could question the grade I got and that I could question the amount of work I did and that I should get a good grade,” Muldrow said. “She changed my life in that moment, and in so many other moments.”

Muldrow says if MMSD can teach its 27,000 students to be solution-focused, how to care about each other, how to value the opinions of people who think differently than themselves, how to be curious and how to turn obstacles into opportunities, it can change the world.

“Right now we need new voices with fresh ideas and know how to value people who think differently than themselves and know how to bring communities together so that people are working together to do extraordinary things,” Muldrow said.

Muldrow faces Cris Carusi and Kate Toews for the spring primary Feb. 21. Two candidates will move on to the April 4 general election.

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