A look today at Wake County’s school board simply confirms the obvious: SCHOOL BOARDS ARE PARTISAN.  Fifteen school boards out of 112 in our state HAVE partisan elections.  (There are 115 school boards in the state, but three school boards are appointed.)   In the partisan elections voters know going into the voting booth if the candidate’s party affiliation is Democrat, Republican, Libertarian or Independent.  These 15 county school board elections were changed from being nonpartisan to partisan by permission from the NC General Assembly, or by the courts due to civil rights issues  – possibly determining that “the elimination of party affiliation on the ballot will likely reduce the ability of blacks to elect candidates of choice.”  However, with our busy lives, I think that the elimination of party affiliation reduces EVERYONE’s ability to elect someone based on their governing philosophy.  Before an election many voters call friends and scramble to discover which “nonpartisan” candidates actually align to their beliefs.

Traditionally the idea is based on the thought that courts and schools were removed from the “political” arena, and these candidates should not get involved in party politics.  Wishful thinking! Political parties represent a person’s belief about how government operates, which is foundational to every elected position.

A study revealing all the “partisan” votes from these “nonpartisan” school boards would be interesting!  Better yet, let’s look at the 15 school boards that have partisan boards and see what we can learn about student achievement, budget issues, school construction and other differences that might exist.  Oh my, better not – that may reveal what a “Party” wants to hide!