Tacoma, WA – On March 2, founder of Vision Step Team and youth advocate, Chelsea (pronounced Chel-See-Ah) McElroy launched her campaign for Tacoma School board. In the last 10 years McElroy has served Tacoma’s children through a variety of avenues including ECEAP teacher for Tacoma Public Schools, Head Start Teacher at Pathways Enrichment Academy Child care trainer and the Founder and Executive Director of Vision Step Team.
Born and raised on the north side of Tacoma McElroy’s family instilled a strong work ethic and commitment to servant leadership. Chelsea’s mother, a social worker and youth advocate, was determined that Chelsea would receive the best possible education. She attended Manitou Park Elementary, Skyline Elementary, and Truman middle school. During her time in Tacoma Public Schools, Chelsea was often either one of very few or the only black student in her grade. After a move in high school her mother, concerned about the quality of education she would receive at her neighborhood school, enrolled her in Bellarmine Preparatory High School. In order to attend the private high school both Chelsea and her mom worked two jobs to pay the tuition.
“I don’t want any family to have to make the choice and sacrifice my family had to in order to ensure their child receives a quality education” McElroy said. “As a Director on The Tacoma School Board, I will work to ensure every student, regardless of where they live, has access to a high quality, free public education.”
In 2010, McElroy made the life changing decision to leave her pre-med classes at Marquette University and return to Tacoma to pursue her passion for children. She attended Early Childhood Education classes and Bates Technical College and began her career working with Tacoma’s children. Through her work in the community, she saw a strong need for a free program that would support elementary age girls – helping them to build self esteem and establish friendships. McElroy applied for a Spark grant in 2017, which was awarded and used to found Vision Step Team. This social-emotional support group for girls ages 4-17, partners with Tacoma Public Schools, Tacoma Arts live, and Asia Pacific Cultural Center to serve over 100 girls across Tacoma each year.
McElroy will bring her love of children, strong work ethic, knowledge of Early Childhood needs, and deep understanding of the inequities and challenges faces by children of color to her role as Tacoma Public School Director.
To Learn more visit www.chelseamcelroy.com