Sterling's Ibrahim Moiz has always had an inclination for politics.
From running for student council in the fourth grade to volunteering for a presidential campaign with his family as a teen to going to law school in D.C. and working as a legislative assistant for former Del. David Poisson (D-32), Moiz says he has had an interest in getting involved and learning how civic systems work.
Moiz said he got “the bug” for public service while working with Poisson in Richmond in 2009. Since then, the northern Virginia lawyer has been involved in his local mosque as the Saturday school principal, helped in statewide campaigns and joined state occupation boards.
Moiz also serves on the Loudoun County Fiscal Impact Committee, which helped him see how much wealth comes through Loudoun.
The father of three daughters in Loudoun County Public Schools, Moiz said running for the School Board's Sterling District seat made the most sense to him. He says he wants to do something that could have an immediate impact on his children.
Moiz said he believes education systems are how adults hand over the baton to the next generation. He feels the current board is trending in the right direction, but there are more steps that should be taken. The Sterling father applauded the School Board’s work in achieving universal full-day kindergarten and for seeing LCPS through in meeting almost every Loudoun 2020 goal.
One thing Moiz feels can be done better is working with the Board of Supervisors to enhance the budget process. He said given supervisors have been deceasing the tax rate, he’d like to explore creative ways to generate income for the county so that schools can get the funding they need to thrive.
Moiz said his experience on the Fiscal Impact Committee opened his eyes to some great ideas.
He also identified raising teacher salaries as an area of interest – something he believes will help LCPS recruit the best teachers.
Specific to the Sterling District, Moiz said he wants to make sure Sterling schools get renovated as needed, so they keep up with modern standards. Moiz said he’d speak with administrators to find out what schools need.
“If our administrations at these schools and our teachers at these schools aren’t happy, that’s going to reflect in the education our children are receiving,” Moiz said.
Moiz said a lot of his ideas stem from speaking to Loudoun residents, and from speaking to his sisters who both work in education. One is a principal in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and the other used to be a teacher and vice principal in Ohio. He said he’d continue to take stakeholder input.
“Whoever has criticism and advice, I’ll take it. I don’t care who you are, how old you are … you come and tell me what you think is better, I’ll look at it, and if I…believe in that, I will fight for it,” Moiz said.
The candidate also said he’d like to look at healthier school meals and make sure that special education services are more inclusive and provided by properly trained individuals.
The Sterling seat is currently held by Brenda Sheridan. Incumbents on the School Board have yet to announce if they will run for re-election.
Moiz said his family and friends have been supportive of his candidacy, and the feedback he’s received from community members so far has been excitement.
“I think they’re excited to know someone who cares about children and who has a vested interest in seeing the education system improve now rather than later because our kids are here, so trying to effectuate that change now means the world to them,” Moiz said.