Until 2015, School board races got little to no attention. As a matter-of-fact, in 2013, school board races had so little attention in Jeffco that 3 extremists managed to get elected; even though those 3, as candidates, stood in public forums and announced their support for guns in school and openly bashed teachers and the teachers union. They said it wasn’t necessary to address vouchers because they weren’t constitutional. Instead, they loudly voiced their support for “choice”. The two candidates (Van Gieson and Shields) challenging incumbents Brad Rupert and Susan Harmon now utter the exact same rhetoric.
This opinion piece recently published by the Editorial Board of the Colorado Springs Gazette is a good example of why it’s crucial we all support board candidates who do not support vouchers – regardless of whether they are “constitutional” or “legal” in the state. It didn’t make any difference to the Douglas County School board when they put forth their Scholarship Program.
“They wanted a program to expand school choice by allowing parents to use scholarship vouchers, funded by the district, to enroll kids in sectarian or secular private schools.”
Some folks might like to point out this is from a paper in Colorado Springs, considered an especially conservative publication with conservative readers. Well, that’s true.
But it is part of the AFP plan to support “school choice” (private school choice).
We have pointed out in numerous articles over the past few months, there’s a big campaign by AFP (Americans for Prosperity), the Koch Brothers, and ALEC to support Vouchers, Education Savings Accounts, Tax Credits, and Scholarships – all under the guise of “school choice”; all tools for privatizing our public schools. http://www.supportjeffcokids.org/killing-public-education-by-choice/
These flyers are now appearing in Dougco and when you visit the website, you magically land at the AFP website.
This opinion piece by the Gazette is part of that campaign. They may be targeting Douglas County school board races, but our Jeffco school board troubles in 2013 got their roots in Dougco.
For the sake of our children and their educational opportunities, let’s not let history repeat itself. Let’s make sure we understand why we need to make sure we are electing people to our school board who really do support real public education.
Here are a few quotes:
The Gazette (Colorado Springs)
Editorial – School choice at stake in November
Gazette editorial board
Sept. 23, 2017
“As Republicans gather for their central committee meeting Saturday in Englewood, they should consider a looming threat to school choice.”
“Douglas County School board members had no idea they would ignite a First Amendment battle for the ages when they enacted a scholarship program to enhance school choice.”
We doubt this is true, Colorado voters previously battled vouchers and turned them down twice. There’s no way they didn’t know.
“They knew the best schools in and near the district included those run by religious organizations, whether Christian, Jewish or other.”
Says who? There’s no data and there’s no comparison to show that private or religious schools are better and they don’t serve similar populations.
“They wanted a program to expand school choice by allowing parents to use scholarship vouchers, funded by the district, to enroll kids in sectarian or secular private schools. The program would end discriminate on a basis of religion, which the First Amendment forbids. Defenders of the racist Blaine law hope to elect a new majority to the school board in November, to dismantle the scholarship program and stop it from becoming a national model for expanding educational options.”
“ElevateDouglasCounty.com advocates four candidates who will stand for school choice and the First Amendment’s ability to defend it. They are: Randy Mills; Ryan Abresch; Deb Scheffel; and Grant Nelson.”
Actually, that group is run by a PR firm, the same one that WNW hired to run the Jeffco Schools communications department along with Lisa Pinto.
“In the political sphere, Ms. Lyng is known in Colorado for her work defeating Amendment 66, also known as the “billion dollar tax increase”. The ballot initiative was defeated by a nearly two-to-one margin.”
“She began her political career in Congressman Tom Tancredo’s district office.”
“Ms. Lyng has served her community as a precinct committee person, a Vice-Chairman, and a Chairman Pro Temps for the Denver Republican Party. “
Here’s how the Gazette editorial board signs off on their political opinion piece:
“School board elections matter. This one has national implications for ending racist laws and expanding school choice. – The Gazette editorial board”
How do you sleep at night?
Election day is November 7th, ballots drop the week of October 16th. Don’t wait until it’s too late.