Letter: Politicization of school boards should concern everyone

To The Editor,

The rapid politicization of school boards should be of concern to all stakeholders. There are good and valid reasons that school board members should adopt a non-partisan stance in their duties.  The only agenda a school board candidate should have is the continued educational progress of our students, the continued prudent use of taxpayer money and community resources, and the health and safety of the students and staff.  These goals by their very nature are non-partisan, and school board members who sincerely adopt these goals are rarely partisan in their approach to achieving them.  This does not mean that Directors do not disagree at times; but it does mean that they work with the district’s administration towards a set of common goals in good faith.  

Yet school boards across the country have become the front line of the partisan divide that presently plagues us. Three candidates for Director of the West Chester Area School District– Ms. Nestor, Ms. Whomsley and Ms. Edgarian—are clear examples of this trend.  All three of these candidates are supported by large political action committees and the local Republican party—all of which are actively politicizing the election.  Further, they actively and demonstrably engage in lies and distortions about public school board meetings and school district actions and policies.  One need only visit their websites to see ample evidence of this fact.

If elected, these three candidates have demonstrated through their words, their actions and their affiliations that they will disrupt, attack, and weaken an excellent school district.  They have also publicly stated their intention to ignore state mandates—thereby placing our district in legal jeopardy.   Further, they consistently question the intentions and diminish the experience and expertise of WCASD’s talented teachers and administrators. Two of these candidates have removed their children from the district, yet they still wish to sit on the Board and undermine the foundation of our excellent school district.

This cannot happen.  We urge the WCASD voters to elect candidates, regardless of party, who are qualified, demonstrate a deep commitment to excellent public schools, and are capable of working constructively and respectfully with administrators, teachers, parents, and the community at large.


Susan Tiernan

Daryl Durnell

Karen Herrmann

Gary Bevilaqua

Kate Shaw

Randell Spackman

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