Bored of Education, Again - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News, Weather and Sports

October 7, 2010

Bored of Education, Again

Just about 43% of Oahu voters who decided to show up for the primary election left their ballots blank when it came time to vote for the at-large Department of Education candidates. Not a resounding sign of confidence in the system now, is it? And that's up from 30% blank votes for the BOE in 2008. Undoubtedly, many people simply don't know who is who, or don't feel like they are in a position to make the choice, or don't think it really matters, which is saddest of all. That leads many to suggest that the Board of Education should be appointed by the governor.

And that means politics gets involved even further in our mediocre education system. What if you have a Board that seems to be pushing through changes and making progress, and a new governor comes in and decides to put his or her stamp on education by changing the Board? Does it make sense to have the DOE Board become a political football every four or eight years? Then again, how much power and autonomy does the Board really have nowadays, with the governor and the legislature involved in many of the final decisions? And since the voting public doesn't get it or doesn't care, should it have the selection power?

You will have the chance to decide if we, the voters, continue to select (or ignore) the Board, as the question of voter-selected or governor-appointed Board of Education will be on the November 2nd ballot. That gives you one month to decide which is the best way for our state to go on this important education hierarchy issue- do you want political appointees or a historically ignorant and under-represented voter decision? Think about it…

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