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School Board Candidates Take Part in Public Forum

Seven candidates are battling for three open board seats. Most spending the last two weeks of campaign time attending public forums and addressing major issues.

Posted: Mar 21, 2018 9:22 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Many candidates running for an open board of education seat are spending their time attending public forums.

"This community supports public education," school board candidate Seth Wright said.

Time is running out for school board of education candidates to campaign for the people's vote.

"I think we have a whole lot of new ideas out there that we need to start putting in place," school board incumbent Larry Koch said.

"What does the next 10, 20, 30 years look like? We are essentially restructuring," candidate Lute Atieh said.

Seven candidates are battling for three open board seats. Most spending the last two weeks of campaign time attending public forums and addressing major issues.

"Probably the number one item that we have in the community coming from the community is that they do not trust the district. they probably trust the district, they don't trust the board and the administration," candidate David Jordan said.

But candidates are sharing their thoughts on how to combat that issue of building trust between district and community.

"We can't ignore the community and think that they are going to support us," candidate Lorri Hollis said.

Another item topping the agenda is the failed $1.15 tax levy vote in November and the current $8 million in budget cuts for the district.

"What happened in November, to have 78 percent of people come out and vote against it, it wasn't even supported by the staff of this district," Wright said.

"We have to concentrate on the local budget," candidate Kenneth Reeder said. "Where the money is coming from locally is where it counts the most."

From there, candidates addressed restructuring public education buildings.

"Second is a bond issue so that we can do what we need to do with our buildings," candidate Aaron Duncan said. "Whether that's build new, renovate, remodel, add on."

And having open communication with the public.

"We need to be out there selling the school district, selling what you do, selling the education for the young people," Koch said.

The general election is set for April 3.

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