Former public school teacher vying for Miami-Dade County School Board seat

Max Tuchman copy
Education entrepreneur Max Tuchman says she wants to give back to the system that made her a success.

A former public school teacher turned education technology entrepreneur announced her bid to represent Miami-Dade County School District 7 on the School Board — seeking the seat a Gov. Ron DeSantis’ appointee currently occupies.

Records show Max Tuchman filed the paperwork for the seat on May 1 and she’s since raised $74,370 for her bid, including a $10,000 loan she gave her campaign.

In a district where the percentage of children attending a charter or private school is significantly greater than the state average, Tuchman is emphasizing her traditional public school roots.

“I am excited to launch my campaign for School Board and give back to the community that made me who I am today,” Tuchman’s prepared statement says. “Over the next few months, I will continue to spend time with parents and educators so that together we can create a plan for more investments in early childhood education, deeper parental involvement in our schools, and ensure that our kids are safe while developing the skills they need for the jobs of tomorrow.”

Her announcement notes that not only is she a graduate of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, she also worked as a classroom teacher there. 

Today, she’s the co-founder of Caribu, an app for reading, drawing and playing games through an interactive video call. It’s been a big enough hit that it’s gotten play on The Today Show and won “best of” awards from Time Magazine, the Apple App Store and Good Housekeeping magazine, according to its website.

The idea was sold to the multinational toy brand Mattel, her announcement says.

“I was born and raised in this community, and I understand the power of a high-quality public education because it is at the core of my success,” Tuchman said, noting that she is a first-generation American, raised by Cuban exile parents. “Our public schools made it possible for me to seize the opportunities so many people dream of for their children, and I am ready to get to work for the families of District 7.”

Currently, Mary Blanco sits in the seat representing Miami-Dade County Schools District 7. DeSantis appointed Blanco, a guidance counselor for an all-girls’ Catholic school, after Lubby Navarro stepped down from the School Board seat representing District 7.

Navarro resigned at the end of last year to comply with a new state law that prevents elected officials from working as lobbyists. The Supervisor of Elections filings show Navarro is the only other announced candidate for the seat and she’s continued to file campaign finance reports showing no contributions. But she did not return a call, text or email seeking to clarify the situation on Tuesday.

The district has been the focus of culture wars involving what’s taught and what materials are available. In September, the board voted to end its usual observance of LGBTQ History Month and the district made national headlines recently when a poem read at President Joe Biden’s inauguration was restricted from elementary school students’ eyes at one school.

Tuchman’s campaign did not return an inquiry on these matters, but her campaign announcement points out Tuchman’s work as a public school teacher was just the beginning of her roles in education.

She’s also worked as the Executive Director of Teach For America, Miami-Dade; manager of education projects for both the Mayor of New York City and the Chancellor of Washington Public Schools; and as an advisor on education policy as a White House Fellow at the U.S. Treasury Department. 

Her campaign announcement also highlights that she graduated from the public college that the DeSantis administration has targeted for an overhaul. She was the former student government association President at New College of Florida where she earned her undergraduate degree, her announcement says.

Tuchman also holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a second master’s degree in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. 

District 7 is made up of the southwest portion of the school district.

Anne Geggis

Anne Geggis is a South Florida journalist who began her career in Vermont and has worked at the Sun-Sentinel, the Daytona Beach News-Journal and the Gainesville Sun covering government issues, health and education. She was a member of the Sun-Sentinel team that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the Parkland high school shooting. You can reach her on Twitter @AnneBoca or by emailing [email protected].


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