I recently interviewed Nancy Pina-Gray, a retired teacher from our school district who is running for the Roosevelt School Board to learn more about her candidacy.
Pina-Gray says she wants to join the school board to help make things better for the students. She explains that the school board makes the decisions on how money is spent and what programs are available to students.
“I feel as a teacher I have a good idea on some things the district should be taking care of that are not being dealt with right now. Right now we have a lot of money problems and we need someone to watch how the money is being spent,” says Pina-Gray.
“I would like to see the district go back to the way it was many years ago. I would like us to be one of the best districts in the state,” she says. “I would like all students to have access to all the programs the district has to offer such as music, art, computers, etc. I do not want money to be the reason we don’t do this. I want to have happy teachers because if you have happy teachers you’re going to have happy students. Teachers are more creative and have more ideas when they’re happy.”
Pina-Gray knew she wanted to be a teacher in third grade. When she went to college there was a need for bilingual teachers, she explains. She has been a bilingual or English Language Learner teacher for 40 years. Pina-Gray was born in California but has lived in and out of Arizona since 1966. She has taught in California, Wisconsin and Arizona. She speaks Spanish, French
and some Trukese, which she learned as a volunteer in the Peace Corps in Micronesia.
Besides her travels for the Peace Corps, Pina-Gray has traveled to many parts of the U.S. “I was able to travel all over the United States as part of the Leadership Training Cadre for the National Education Association which was a lot of fun,” she says.