Helping Hands: The Miami Lakes Education Advisory Board

Community By Alexandra Herrera, Reporter Friday, September 15, 2023

The Helping Hands column focuses on the town’s 12 volunteer committees and boards that promote various causes in Miami Lakes and help the town government serve the community.   

Committee activities are funded by the town budget and by ticket sales from some events.

Committee Education Advisory Board 

Founded May 22, 2001

Chair Hector Abad

Vice Chair Mario Pinera Jr.  

Secretary Emily Garcia

Members Maurits Acosta, student member; Claudia Luces; Daylin Garcia; Jessica Mendoza and Kevin Menendez Macki. 

Purpose The Education Advisory Board is dedicated to assessing the condition, needs and availability of schools and educational programs and activities within Miami Lakes, according to the town’s website.  

Every spring, the Education Advisory Board honors high achieving students and have programs that happen throughout the year. The committee has several educators as members who also volunteer with other groups to help the children of Miami Lakes.

 Among the committee’s projects: -- It is responsible for paying shipping for books ordered from Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. The library provides free books to kids up to age five, according to Chair Hector Abad. The volunteers also sponsor classes and events at the Miami Lakes branch of the Miami-Dade County Public Library System for students in all grades. 

 The committee has seven members and a student representative who meet on the last Monday of each month.  During their August meeting, reviewed the costs and details for the Awards of Excellence, which was held in May. They also discussed how much money they’ll need to put it on next year. 

Area school principals are non-voting members of the committee and attend the group’s meetings to discuss different items of concern.  Secretary Emily Garcia  joined the committee in January 2020. 

“I wanted to join to continue giving back to our community and schools,” Garcia said.

 This isn’t Garcia’s first time volunteering with a committee; she previously served five years on the Miami Lakes Youth Activities Task Force. 

 Garcia also volunteers with The Giving Gators charity which supports education and works to improve the quality of life for impoverished students. 

“[I also wanted] to provide my own experience and input as a life-long resident of Miami Lakes who attended our schools,” Garcia said. 

 To join this or any other committee, file a form with Miami Lakes Town Clerk Gina Inguanzo and attend two committee meetings. 

 A council member will then recommend the applicant. Committee members must live or work in town. Some committees require applicants to pass a background check. 

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