New Organization to Seek, Equip, and Support Qualified Local School Board Candidates
June 25, 2023
June 25, 2023
Tired of the shouting, grandstanding, and rancor that’s come to dominate many local school board meetings? Had enough of small but very vocal minorities pushing extreme agendas? Wishing that school board meetings could once again be about what’s best for kids instead of serving as culture war battlefields?
You’re not alone. That’s why a new organization is now part of the Virginia education landscape: It’s called We the People for Education (WTPFE), and its vision is to work with educators and families across the state to help elect school board members representative of the students, schools, and their communities. And, perhaps, to restore a certain level of sanity to the overseeing of our schools.
WTPFE aims to help equip school board candidates by offering key assistance in the form of, among others, campaign services, data management, guidance on policy, communications advice, training, and coalition-building. The organization can also serve as a bridge between being elected and learning to govern effectively as a new leader.
Momentum began to create WTPFE early last year as education organizations, including the VEA, some former Virginia Secretaries of Education and former members of the Virginia Board of Education, and other advocates and leaders passionate about public schools in the Commonwealth decided something had to be done to support well-qualified candidates in school board elections, which often found themselves as overlooked local contests. And, while there is a robust political ecosystem for finding and supporting candidates for the General Assembly and other offices in our state, it doesn’t usually extend to school board positions. So, an exploratory group began meeting to combine expertise and raise funds, and WTPFE launched in March 2023.
We the People is a fully Virginia-funded nonprofit, underwritten by organizational and individual donations. If you’re interested in supporting the group’s mission, there are a number of ways you can help out: