Many people have asked us for our views on the April 9 election for the four seats on the ETHS School Board. Please vote in the eleciton, which is April 9. Early voting starts March 25.
We feel it is necessary to stand up and speak our truth as the election for members of the school board of Evanston Township High School District 202 is rapidly approaching. As long time Evanston/Skokie residents (Nancy 35+ years, David all of his life – 62 years) we are very concerned about the tenor of the conversation around the campaigns and the future composition and direction of the school board. We have never seen so much innuendo, falsehood, spinning of fact and disregard for truth in a local election. While this has become more and more of the national norm, it is discouraging to see at this, or any level.
We have chosen to live here because of the diversity of the community. We raised our family here, and our children went to District 65 schools and ETHS because of the richness of opportunity to interact with people who, while externally appearing different, all strove for the best and to be the best.
David works at ETHS, but that does not preclude him from acting as a concerned citizen when he is not at work. These endorsements are our personal views and not coming from the voice of a district employee.
This election, in our minds, is a crossroads between continuing to move forward at ETHS and turning the clock backwards. We believe we need to continue forward. Nobel Economics Laureate, Joseph Stiglitz writes of the connection between education and ending inequality in our country. The role of public schools is to provide access to opportunity for all students. ETHS has been working to support all students in gaining knowledge and skill through the most rigorous classes available. The goal of supporting black and brown children to be as successful as white children is at the heart of the mission of ETHS.
ETHS has not ended honors classes. ETHS has not ended Advanced Placement classes. More students than ever are now taking these courses. More white students and more students of color are successfully sharing perspectives and viewpoints as they matriculate together. This has not raised class size or impacted our property taxes. It has made learning more of the center of the work at ETHS, not teaching.
The role of the board is to work with an administration and a superintendent towards carrying out a shared community vision. We believe that the vision of the Evanston/Skokie Community is one of equity and justice. We believe it is a vision of moving forward to support the learning of all students. We believe that it is a vision of a school that will close a racial achievement gap by supporting the high expectations and success of students of color as well as those of the historically high achieving white students.
To that end, we feel that four candidates will best work toward achieving that vision. They are Elena Garcia Anani, Bill Geiger, Casey Miller and Pat Savage-Williams. We will be voting for these four as people who will push ETHS to move forward. After listening to the candidates, and hearing the misinterpretations of some of their supporters, we feel we need to speak out and encourage our community to do the right thing and support progress at ETHS.
Early voting begins this week and the election is April 9. Join us in voting for Elena, Bill, Casey and Pat as we, together, stand up and move our community forward towards racial equity in education and away from inequality and injustice.
— Nancy Liebman and David Futransky