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OSBA urges local candidates to ‘Get on Board’ in 2019

News release
Oregon School Boards Association
Jan. 15, 2019
For immediate release
Contact: Alex Pulaski, 503-485-4812; apulaski@osba.org

The Oregon School Boards Association (OSBA) is once again urging motivated individuals statewide to run in their local school board elections.

The effort is part of OSBA’s Get on Board campaign, designed to raise awareness about the volunteer work performed by education board members and to encourage individuals to run in the May 21 election. The campaign also urges individuals of color to run for school boards.

In Oregon, school board elections are held in odd-numbered years; the filing period for candidates opens Feb. 9.

OSBA is holding two candidate webinars, on Jan. 24 and Feb. 19, designed for individuals considering a campaign for the governing board of a school district, education service district (ESD) or community college. Informational goals include preparing candidates to understand how board actions affect student success, encouraging candidates of color to run, helping prospective candidates understand board responsibilities, and guiding participants in planning next steps.

Jim Green, OSBA’s executive director, said the webinars provide an opportunity for individuals to receive important information before the March 21 deadline to file as candidates.

“We believe that one of the best ways you can make a difference in your community is to run for your local school board,” said Green, who is also a member of the Salem-Keizer School Board. “School boards make decisions that change lives and create opportunities for our young people to succeed.”

Bill Graupp, a member of the North Marion School Board, is president of the Oregon School Board Members of Color Caucus, which OSBA established in 2016. He said it’s important for school boards to better reflect Oregon’s changing demographics.

“We’re slowly making progress here in seeing more individuals of color run for school board,” Graupp said. “But the reality is we have a long way to go in seeing our local boards – and ultimately the administrators and staffs that districts hire – look more like the students they serve.”

OSBA is a non-profit member services organization for more than 200 locally elected boards serving school districts, education service districts and community colleges.