As of 10 PM EST the Dayton Daily News reports that Springboro voters have elected Charles Anderson, Dr. Ron Malone, and David Stuckey to replace the outgoing members of the School Board. In addition, voters passed the renewal levy by over 3 to 1, pointing to the fact that residents of the Springboro are ready for the changing of the guard.
Over the last few years the actions of the School Board have caused quite a stir in the community, including a contentious dispute over the collective bargaining rights of the teachers union, the introduction of Creationism, along with a host of other “controversial issues.” Judging from the results of the election, it is evident that the Board overreached in its goals to make public education more affordable, as voters rejected David Bitner and Kolton Vaughn who previously pledged to continue pursing the Students First agenda.
David Petroni and Jim Rigano, both strong proponents of Students First and co-bloggers at Educate Springboro, will remain seated on the Board. The inclusion of Stuckey and Malone with the business experience of Anderson has the potential to restore balance to our community while focusing on the merits of Students First, assuming the Board can find a way to include the disparate voices in our conversation about education in the 21st century.
Voters also elected the changing of the guard in Ward 1 by electing Lori Kershner by a narrow margin. While there were reports of mudslinging by her opponent Shelia Lairson in the final days of the election, Kershner’s focus on a strategic plan of action along with a well organized team of volunteers earned her a well deserved seat on the City Council. I’m hoping that Jim Chmiel, the newly elected representative of Ward 4 and my local representative, will take the time to learn how Kershner communicates online with constituents such as myself.
For me personally, I’m most excited by the success of Lori Kershner’s campaign. While most of the attention went to the battle between MSA4Springboro and Educate Springboro, Kershner’s vision of a unified Springboro could help pave the way to success for both the City Council and the Board of Education. The key is to create a strategic plan of action that everyone can agree on, not only including but with the assistance of the local residents.
In laymen’s terms, we the people of the City of Springboro elected you to represent our needs. You won’t find them in the planks of your campaign platform. It’s more likely that you will find them online, and we would ask that you either come to us or create a space online where we can vote more than once every few years. Give us the opportunity to contribute more directly to our city governance and some of us might just surprise you.
Congratulations to all the winners! We hope to see you soon on the Internet.