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Florida Republicans Mobilizing to Win Local School Board Races

Florida Republicans Mobilizing to Win Local School Board Races

“‘Payback is coming in August’ when the school board elections are held”

Republicans in Florida, many of whom share political views with Governor Ron DeSantis, are taking advantage of favorable winds and running for seats on school boards.

This is part of a new and energized grassroots movement just starting. You love to see it.

Andrew Atterbury reports at Politico:

Florida Republicans turn school elections into new political battlegrounds

Florida Republicans are capitalizing on the national movement surrounding parental rights and education by jumping into local school board races with crucial endorsements and much-needed cash.

Dozens of political committees with ties to Florida conservatives are funneling thousands of dollars toward candidates who share Gov. Ron DeSantis’ priorities by campaigning against issues like critical race theory. DeSantis endorsed a slate of 10 school board candidates — a rare, if not unprecedented, move for a Florida governor that could help Republicans capture more support in the midterms from parents energized by contentious issues such as masking students during the pandemic.

“People are frustrated with the business-as-usual on these school boards,” said Christian Ziegler, vice chair of the Republican Party of Florida whose wife, Bridget, is running to keep her seat on the Sarasota County school board and has been endorsed by DeSantis.

“Payback is coming in August” when the school board elections are held, Ziegler said.

School board races in Florida are traditionally nonpartisan, sleepy down-ballot races. But Republicans, led by DeSantis, are getting more involved this year after the Covid-19 pandemic inflamed interest in education and what students are learning in schools, particularly about race and gender identity. Democrats have not shown similar levels of funding.

In some ways, this feels like Tea Party 2.0, with ordinary people getting involved in making a real difference because they’ve simply had enough of business as usual.

Tristan Wood reports at City and State Florida:

Power to the parents: A homegrown conservative movement is gunning for school board seats across the state

Parents and school districts have been historically viewed as a dynamic duo in the mutual mission to educate children. But the age of COVID, with its mask mandates and school shutdowns, fractured that relationship, especially for many conservative-leaning parents in Florida and across the country.

That break-up has changed how Republicans are confronting school board elections from the Panhandle to the Keys, entrenching them in races they used to ignore. Many of the candidates are focused on school districts that violated Gov. Ron DeSantis’ mask mandate prohibition during the pandemic…

Bridget Ziegler, a member of the Sarasota County School Board and one of the co-founders of Moms for Liberty, a conservative parental rights advocacy group, says the wave of conservative candidates comes from their voices not being heard during those meetings. Her county, which leans conservative in voter registration, was one of the districts that was heavily protested, receiving national attention.

“When they came to address their concerns, they were met with disdain,” Ziegler says. “They believe that the role of government is to listen and represent them, not to put forward the egregious policies that we saw as a result of COVID.” But the issues now have gone beyond COVID to a broader concern for more parental rights, including reviewing textbooks and the teaching – or prohibition – of race, sex and gender issues in the classroom.

If this works, Florida could become a model for other states around the country.

This is what ‘power to the people’ looks like.

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Comments

Now That is the ticket! Win local and think statewide then nation wide.

    CommoChief in reply to Whitewall. | June 29, 2022 at 10:19 am

    Exactly! No white knight is going to save us. We have to be willing to get involved at the precinct level and up to bring about the changes we desire. That means ‘eternal vigilance’. Had we done that at the local level on a consistent basis the School Boards would already be comprised of folks who reject CRT/equity and trans ideology. Better late than never but a single election cycle won’t be enough. The effort must be sustained because the d/prog don’t rest after an election, they start plotting how to regain power and how to use law fare to hamstring and frustrate any reforms by the new members.

    Except in most states the K-12 accreditors, previously known as AdvancED (covered in my book Credentialed to Destroy: How and Why Education Became A Weapon) and now as Cognia, threaten to pull the accreditation of any school or system whose Board acts on anything other than financial matters and hiring and firing the Super. Intervening in curricula is a huge no-no and Board members only learn this when they win election and show up for their ‘training’.

    Board members from all over the country have reached out quietly to thank me for recognizing this restriction on their authority because they are not allowed to reveal it. Accreditors prevent elected Board members from following through on their promises to the electorate unless they have a progressive vision for education.

    The new K-12 Standards take effect in two days and this is a link to what will be required of all schools https://www.cognia.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/Performance-Standards.pdf

    The best way to wrest back control of schools is for this stealth limitation of Board authority to be better known.

      Dathurtz in reply to Robin. | June 29, 2022 at 1:25 pm

      Parents need to actually understand accreditation and what it means. Mostly, it is worthless for anything related to actual learning in most cases.

      Parents need to understand what goes into whatever the local school score (or grade, or whatever) calculation.

      We have been too complacent and still use dumb metrics to represent how well a school is doing.

      gibbie in reply to Robin. | June 29, 2022 at 2:06 pm

      When I thought about running for our government school’s school board 30 years ago I realized that it was A FOOL’S MISSION for the exact reason you helpfully point out.

      I’m astounded that the otherwise fine folk at LI continue to advocate for this dead end tactic.

      People would be better off using their precious time to start private schools, and advocate for home schooling and school choice. While getting their children out of the government schools.

        mailman in reply to gibbie. | June 30, 2022 at 6:01 am

        Why not do both?

        Look, Im going to disagree with you sinply because to do as you say is to leave the cancer of leftism in schools in positions of power. These people are evil at their very core and need to be ferreted out where ever they hide in the system.

        And while that is going on, go and set up a private school but the only problem is far more people are not going to be able to take advantage of this than can take advantage. And they cannot be left behind under the control of the cancer of leftism.

        JohnSmith100 in reply to gibbie. | June 30, 2022 at 5:21 pm

        How about canceling these accredation entities? Maybe, start by creating alternatives? There should be an organized effort to gather dirt on leaders, and then use it to beat the living crap out of them. Take scalps, destroy their professional and personal lives.

      gibbie in reply to Robin. | June 29, 2022 at 2:20 pm

      Is there a difference between the 10/12/2013 edition and the 1/1/1722 [sic Amazon] edition of your book?

        No. That may be the kindle version. Book provides the foundation for what is really going on and is more relevant than ever because I correctly concluded that the Common Core learning standards were a competency framework by how they functioned.

        I am an attorney so I follow what has been legally mandated and then apply the actual meanings of the terms of art used in education such as Excellence or Quality Learning to give two examples still in common use. As I have joked, what makes something binding also makes it highly traceable.

      CommoChief in reply to Robin. | June 29, 2022 at 5:44 pm

      Another way to course correct govt schools is to work to adopt similar legislation to AZ which puts funding to follow the student to the environment that works best for their needs. Govt school, private, parochial, homeschool, pod or blend. True competition will do wonders.

        But it’s not true competition because once a single student comes in with government money following the child, all the government rules come in. UNESCO loves School Choice with a deliberate Proper Noun name.

        Parents think they made a choice and escaped and thus stop scrutinizing. The supposed port in the storm now must change too to conform with the rules attached to that government funded student(s).

        That’s why it is so important to recognize the true drivers like learning standards and accreditation, as just two stealth mandates, that change all the schools in a single comparably functioning direction. Only the rhetoric differs. It’s is still about altering who the child is, what they do or do not perceive and value, and how they interpret their daily experiences.

        It is intentionally and repeatedly proclaimed to be neurological and if you watch and listen the professional association webinars and programs it is clear that no computer program having punch cards fed into it was any more managed than what these learning standards do when accurately understood.

        https://www.cognia.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/APS-STEM-Certification-Overview.pdf makes it clear that math and science are now just vehicles for the desired changes in how any student views the world.

        It is so frustrating to hear open declarations of “this is how we change humanity!” while parents still think the debate is how to teach reading or why math is now integrated.

        Understanding the true agenda is the only way to get schools as genuine ports in the storm back.

          CommoChief in reply to Robin. | June 29, 2022 at 9:37 pm

          I agree wholeheartedly that there are many ways the ed bureaucracy, unions and activists will attempt to subvert actual choice to escape the destructive policies of hate and tribalism they wish to impose. No doubt they all want to continue to indoctrinate students no matter the location.

          I can certainly see how that might be in play at a private or parochial school. Of course, that scenario doesn’t describe a state of true competition at all.

          How does that play out in home school or a pod scenario run by the parents? Why would they be willing to indoctrinate their own children with the same ideological agenda that caused them to flee govt schools? They couldn’t do so unwittingly because they would be active participants.

While they are at it, replacing those Soros funded AGs would be useful as well.

In my State, school board races are supposedly non-partisan.

That doesn’t mean the candidates are not 100% hyper-partisan, as usual.

All it does is eliminate Party affiliation tags after their names on the ballot. So, its difficult to tell what any candidate actually stands for – especially since such races generate almost no news or political advertisements for the candidates.

In effect, it allows radical leftwingers to gain the power to change the curriculum to indoctrinate our kids with their racist, anti-American views.

When I go to vote, I also stop by the D’s table outside the polling place and ask for their slate of candidates. They hand me a piece of paper with all of the candidates they recommend for every office being voted on. I go in and vote against every single one of them.

Who says Teacher Union’s, and the dues they pay, have never done anyone any good?

    mailman in reply to Aarradin. | June 30, 2022 at 6:04 am

    FAcebook is great for finding out what people REALLY think because people just dont have any filter on social media! Just because they have an R after their name doesnt mean they believe in the constitution and freedom of speech and so on.

    henrybowman in reply to Aarradin. | July 1, 2022 at 5:44 pm

    “In my State, school board races are supposedly non-partisan.”

    Meet the ‘Chardonnay Antifa’ Candidate for Loudoun County School Board…

    “He graduated from college last year, was a hyper-partisan Executive Director of the Loudoun County Democrats, and is the Communications Director of a hyper-partisan special interest group.”

    (“Nicholas Gothard, communications director of the LGBT advocacy group Equality Loudoun, is concerned about the message sent by not using preferred gender pronouns…”)

    And the photo is everything you dreamed it would be…