Thursday, June 19, 2008

On The Clarke County Board of Education

With the Clarke County Board of Education continuing its impersonation of a slow-motion train wreck, a few observations come to mind as many commentators in the local media and blogosphere note the need for some new blood on the Board.

The Clayton County School District, which significantly outperforms its Clarke County counterpart in terms of graduation rates and AYP scores (and at far less expense, mind you), got into accreditation trouble not because of the academic performance of its students, but due to a variety of administrative problems. It seems that we now have the worst of both worlds here in the Classic City, low student achievement coupled with administrative chaos.

It is sad that a debacle of this magnitude was required to get folks exercised about what has happened to the school system. As I noted over at Jmac’s earlier in the week (scroll down to the 5th comment):

With the exception of the mayor's office, during the last election cycle the only contested spots on either the Commission of the Board of Education were the open seats (District 1 and 9 on the Commission and District 5 on the BOE). So, implied (as opposed to actual) satisfaction with incumbents is the norm.

Be that as it may, those who may be contemplating a run for office need to remember that Board districts do not correspond to Commission districts. A comparison can probably best be seen at the precinct level.

Lastly, the Board of Elections has sample ballots for the Democrat and Republican primaries to be held on 15 July. Just why the Dems continue to elect their County Committee this way eludes me; is such a practice still common in other counties?

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