Salud Carbajal presents flag and shares his personal story with students

Staff Report

Congressman Salud Carbajal visited Santa Ynez Valley Charter School on Friday, Oct. 8, to present a flag that had flown over the U.S. Capitol and to share his personal story with students, parents and staff. 

The event began with the presentation of the flag, which was raised by seventh-grade student Anthoney Lewis, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance. After an introduction by SYVCS Executive Director John Dewey, Carbajal addressed the school community and shared his journey to Washington, D.C., from childhood as an immigrant at the age of 5, to graduating from UCSB, working for Santa Barbara County and eventually stepping into politics. Following his remarks, he took students’ questions, which ranged from how much a congressman is paid to what kind of food is served on the plane to D.C.

“Thank you for inviting me to share a few words with you about my personal story and my job as your representative in Washington,” Carbajal said. “I want to recognize the teachers, staff and parents for all that they do to make sure you come to a great school such as this to learn and get the best possible education.”

The congressman also presented a Congressional Certificate in recognition of the school’s 21st year and received a gift from SYVCS student leaders: a framed photo of the whole student body.

Two SYVCS families were instrumental in making the event happen. Bob Handy, grandfather of eighth-grader Danielle Handy, extended the invitation, and Wendy Motta, a former parent and current district representative for Carbajal, organized the logistics. 

“This visit and congressional recognition is a testament to all the hard work and dedication of our teachers, staff and parent volunteers over many years. There is so much good news to share about our school,” Dewey said. “The congressman has helped raise our profile and instilled a renewed sense of spirit and pride. I’m so proud of everything our school has accomplished and of all the phenomenal students and families that make up our community.”