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Meet Jacky McCoy

I am an educator who is dyslexic with over 35 years of experience in education.  My three children graduated from Long Reach High School where I taught mathematics. I am also a grandmother of elementary aged children.  

 

After living in Howard County for 25 years, I’m running for a seat on the Howard County Board of Education because I want to bring my unique set of skills and experiences to bring about: 

 

  • REAL EDUCATION that is effective for all students, 

  • REAL ACCESS to necessary resources for students and teachers, and 

  • REAL FAMILY ENGAGEMENT from preschool to high school. 

 

It is my goal to ensure that every student has equitable access to opportunity, regardless of where they live within the county.

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My Story

My story is one of overcoming. Through determination, creativity, and self-advocacy, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland, College Park.  After giving birth to three of my children (each born prematurely) and my being diagnosed as dyslexic later in life, I became extremely passionate about the need for excellent educators and wanted to help students in public schools. I decided to become a certified teacher earning a Master of Arts in Secondary Education from Johns Hopkins University. I have taught at the elementary, middle, and high school levels and have been a math tutor and education advocate for more than 35 years.

 

BACKGROUND

From a very early age I noticed that there were disparities in who had access to effective education. I grew up in Richmond, Virginia, where I was raised by an aunt and uncle who stepped in when my mother needed help.  Although I excelled in math, I was denied access to advanced mathematics in elementary school without an explanation. I struggled with reading, but was never offered any assistance. It was not until adulthood that I learned that I was dyslexic. 

 

My passion for  education began with the birth of  my three children, each born prematurely. I learned they would each need extra individual support to meet their developmental milestones. I homeschooled them at various times so that they could receive one-on-one attention with in-depth instruction not available in most traditional schools. I began tutoring children in math in 1984. When I started tutoring in Howard County, some of the parents of my students informed me that their children were being placed in special education classes. However, as I worked with the children, I realized that most of them simply needed more time to digest the material.  I have championed education ever since.

 

EDUCATION PHILOSOPHY 

I believe all children deserve an excellent education. Success in education can be viewed as a three-legged stool consisting of a partnership between families, students, and schools.  That stool can be strengthened with a fourth leg of support from every community, organization, large and small businesses.  My focus on real effective education for all students, real access to necessary resources for students and teachers, and real family engagement from preschool to high school will drive my work as a member of the Howard County Board of Education.

 

ADVOCACY

Through the years, I have advocated for children’s education and assisted families as they jumped numerous hurdles related to their children’s learning. From assisting students and parents with navigating the education issues with teachers  and schools to championing children's admissions into Gifted and Talented Programs, I have first hand knowledge and experience with some of the education challenges within HCPSS. 

 

As a Long Reach High School PTSA President I work closely with my PTSA board and the school administration to lead change in the school environment. Under my leadership parents maintained a regular presence in the school building by walking the school hallways in highly visible PTSA tee-shirts throughout the school year to provide a level of calm and connection between the students, staff, and families.   As PTSA President,  I helped hold the school administration accountable by having them meet with the PTSA around suspension and attendance data as well as academic performance data.

 

LEADERSHIP / VOLUNTEERING

  • Co-Founder of Changing Lens - current

  • Board of Trustees of Generation Teach (nation-wide summer learning program) - current

  • Talk with Me Howard County - current

  • Howard County NAACP Education Committee - current

  • Member of Executive Board and facilitator for Speak Up HoCo ( formerly Youth in Conversation) - current

  • Facilitator with Courageous Conversation of Howard County - recurring

  • Member of the Howard County Racial Equity Task Force - Education Policy Subgroup [Early Childhood Development and Education (0-5)] - completed

  • Howard County Local Children’s Board Racial Equity Committee - completed

  • Howard Curriculum writing - mathematics - past

  • Alpha Achievers - brought 2nd chapter to Long Reach High School (led to chapters opening county-wide) - completed

  • President and 1st Vice President PTSA, Long Reach High School, Columbia, MD - past

  • Howard County Board of Education Citizen Advisory Council (now Community Advisory Council), Columbia, MD - past

  • Howard County Public School System Calendar Committee, Columbia, MD - past

  • Howard County Public School System Middle School Schedule Committee, Columbia, MD - past

  • Howard County NAACP Youth Branch Advisor, Howard County, MD - past

  • Architecture, Construction and Engineering (ACE) Mentor, REACH! Partnership, Baltimore - past

  • MD Engineering Mentor, Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, Baltimore, MD - past