The mother of three young children, Ruth DeLuca said she and her husband were drawn to making their home in Wilton because of the town’s reputation for having excellent public schools and being a caring community. “That was my perspective for choosing the town, and I want others to choose the town as well,” she said.

DeLuca, 41, is a Democrat and has lived in Wilton for three and a half years. She has two children in the Miller-Driscoll School and one child in preschool.

While she is currently a stay-at-home mom, she brings a strong economic and legal background to the table. She has a bachelor’s degree in political science and economics, a master’s in public and social policy, and a law degree from Brooklyn Law School.

Drawing on her advocacy skills from her legal experience, DeLuca traveled to Hartford this past March, as part of the Hands Off Our Schools movement, to testify against proposed legislation which would have forced Wilton to regionalize with other local school districts. “To ensure our schools stay strong, I believe in the importance of local control, oversight, and decision making,” she said.

DeLuca’s background would be especially helpful during the budget process, she said, which she sees as the top issue facing the Board of Education.

“We are going to be operating in a narrowly funded environment. It’s important to advocate for appropriate and effective funding, be thoughtful about programming, and be mindful and creative about how we use our amazing talent and resources as we adjust to the enrollment cycle,” she said.

Another important issue for her is ensuring Wilton schools have the right resources to support the emotional well-being of the student body and parents. “We need to make sure we are effectively managing technology in the classrooms, and the school climate is welcoming to all, so parents and students see the schools as a resource in challenging times,” she said.

It’s also important, she said, that programs and curriculum in the schools are keeping pace with the educational needs of students in the 21st century. “We need to provide meaningful opportunity for students at all levels. That includes instruction in the classroom for younger levels. Children need the opportunity to be children in a non-instructional environment as well,” she said.

DeLuca is positive about messages her children are receiving in school. “I love that my second grader told my kindergartener to be more ‘empathetic’ and knew what that meant,” she said.

Wilton is doing a great job, she said, but great schools don’t stay great just because you want them to. “We have to work at it. I believe in collaboration, cooperation and communication, and look forward to being an advocate for all of Wilton’s parents and children,” she said.

pgay@wiltonbulletin.com