Pennsylvanians who care about public education have a lot at stake in 2023. Voters will elect school board members in every school district except Philadelphia, which has a board that is appointed by the mayor.
School board members have enormous power to shape the culture and priorities of the districts they are elected to represent.
We will be hosting an information session at four different times to help people learn about the roles and responsibilities of school boards in Pennsylvania, what it takes to run, the requirements for being a candidate, and important dates in the election season.
Even if you don’t want to run for the school board, you will learn more about how to be engaged locally to ask questions about key policy positions so you can understand how candidates would approach the job and help ensure that candidates pay attention to your priorities.
Central Bucks School District: A Case Study in School Board Extremism and What is at Stake in 2023
Since 2021, we have seen the damage that school boards with an extremist majority of board members can inflict on children and on schools and the extraordinary legal and other costs they rack up for taxpayers responding to complaints and defending indefensible policy decisions.
For example, the Central Bucks school board has been relentless in working to pass extremist policies. The district is now paying a lawyer $940 PER HOUR to respond to a complaint filed in October by the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania with the U.S. Departments of Justice and Education and to conduct an internal investigation to address allegations that the district has created a hostile environment for LGBTQ students.
The district is also paying a public relations firm $15,000 per month to help deflect attention away from the extremist policies the board is pushing. For context, the $180,000 that the board is paying this firm annually could have been used to hire and pay for two full-time teachers to support student learning instead.
In many districts, school board races have been sleepy affairs in the past. In off-year elections voter turnout is extremely low and people often don’t even know who is running for school board. Candidates frequently even run unopposed.
Any school district with a board that is taken over by extremists in 2023 could become the next Central Bucks.
Don’t let that happen in your community. Please join us for an information session in January so you are ready for the school board elections in 2023.
PS: Click HERE to learn more about our school board monitoring program. Anyone is welcome to fill out the school board monitor form with information about your district or email me for additional information.