Sunil Dasgupta, Ph.D., is a first-generation immigrant, parent of three public school students, and a longtime educator in Montgomery County. He is running for the At-Large seat on the Montgomery County Board of Education.
Sunil is an Educator and Parent
For the last 11 years, Sunil has taught political science and served as the Director of the Political Science Program for UMBC at the Universities at Shady Grove (USG). Nearly 90 percent of Sunil's students have been Montgomery County Public School students who take the 2+2+2 pathway from high school to Montgomery College and finally to the Universities at Shady Grove.
As an educator and a parent of three students in MCPS high, middle, and elementary schools, Sunil observes the strengths and weaknesses of K-12 education in the county from multiple perspectives, which informs his advocacy for public education in many forums and across several issues.
Sunil is an Education Advocate
Sunil has written extensively on local education matters, including the controversial boundary change debate and how to expand the home and school partnership. He has provided written and spoken testimony to the Board of Education and the county's legislative delegation. He has advocated on behalf of school improvement with the Board of Education, County Council, and Montgomery County state legislative delegation, and with the state legislature.
To revive direct home-teacher relationships, Sunil organizes monthly social hours around the county through the Facebook group Parent-Teacher Exchange, which now has more than 300 members. He also posts frequently about education matters on Twitter and Facebook.
Sunil has advocated strongly for youth mental health, based on the understanding that wellness can powerfully determine academic performance. Sunil organizes the Annual Mental Health and Wellness Forum for MCPS students, staff and families. In 2020, over 300 county residents attended the forum. More information about the Forum is available at the MoCo Mental Health and Wellness Facebook group.
Sunil currently serves as a member of the Montgomery Planning Board's Schools Technical Advisory Team, where he helps with the Subdivision Staging Policy, working to match development with school enrollment. He is part of a citizens' group looking at the county general plan, which is coming up for review in 2020. Previously he served on a Rockville City committee that examined school overcrowding and the development moratorium within the municipal limits of the city.
Sunil is a PTA Leader
Sunil serves on the Board of Directors of the MCCPTA, is Chair of the MCCPTA's Health and Wellness Committee, and is an MCCPTA Rockville Cluster Coordinator. In 2017-2018, Sunil was PTA President at Earle B. Wood Middle School and was the winner of the 2018 MCCPTA Dad4PTA Award.
Sunil has served as the Chair of the MCCPTA's Health and Wellness Committee since 2017. As Health and Wellness Chair, Sunil works with and supports the subcommittees on School Nutrition, Safe Technology, and Substance Use Prevention.
Sunil Brings Professional Expertise
If he is elected as an at-large member of the Montgomery County Board of Education, Sunil hopes to bring together his community service and his professional expertise. As a professor and a researcher, Sunil developed solutions for complex problems of governance and public policy. He has worked with financial reports and budget documents, and has used data to inform difficult public policy questions.
Sunil's professional interests include research on school funding and administration, as well as other questions of local governance and public policy. For the last few years, Sunil's research has focused on civic empowerment and particularly family engagement with school systems.
Sunil is a Parent, a Spouse, a Son…
Sunil lives in Aspen Hill with his wife, Elana Mintz, their three MCPS-going children, his mother, and their 75-pound dog. He helped his wife found a nonprofit organization, Urban Adventure Squad, which supports schools and school communities with outdoor-focused learning programs. Sunil and his family are members of Temple Emanuel in Kensington.