Sunday, January 11, 2009

Vote of Confidence? Or is it Resigned Apathy?

Incumbent school board members John Whalen, Terry Shimek, and Al Slane can sleep a little easier: they are running unopposed for their school board seats. Well, at least that's the case unless some unknown challenger rises from the background and chooses to mount a write-in campaign. We don't claim to be city historians, but it seems that 3 board members running without opposition is a fairly unprecedented situation; certainly in recent years. Of course there's nothing left that's "sexy" on the docket. The major decisions have been made. Other than the 4K program, the next significant fiscal event horizon will be when the district comes back to us for an 8th elementary school.

Sadly, we suspect that their egos are telling them that no opposition means abject community support for them. Realistically, however, it may well be just another sign that too many in this community are apathetic about the school board.

Certainly many grumble about property taxes and school board decisions. But very few are sufficiently resolute in their complaints to actually take out and submit nomination papers.

So it seems we have 3 more years of at least two of them. Whoever winds up 3rd in the voting, however, will be awarded only a 1-year term to complete Jim Carrel's term.

A wise man once said that if one wishes to see how good a leader they are, they need only turn around and see exactly who is lined up behind them. We don't see long lines behind any of the current crop of school board members.