Gilbert School Board Race Faces Multiple Divisive Issues

Published: Friday, October 31, 2014 - 5:13pm
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There are a lot of school board elections on this year’s ballot in Arizona and many of them are sleepy affairs. In several, the positions aren’t even contested. That is definitely not the case in Gilbert.

The school board race there has drawn five candidates for two seats, as well as a lot of money and more than its share of divisiveness. The Gilbert Public School Board has found itself in the news, most recently this week, when it voted to remove pages from a Biology textbook dealing with abortion. For some background on the board and the election, we turn to Mark Olalde - he covers education in the Southeast Valley for the Arizona Republic.

The candidates in the race are Ron Bellus and Dawn Brimhall, who are seen as being aligned with the current board majority. Jill Humphreys and Charles Santa Cruz are seen as being more aligned with the current board minority. Reed Carr is the candidate Olalde referenced as walking the tightrope.

Parents have, in fact, been involved in this race and we’ve spoken with two of them, each supporting a different slate of candidates. Joe Nicita has two kids in Gilbert Public Schools and supports Bellus and Brimhall. I asked him to describe the race.

Blake Sacha has one kid in Gilbert Public Schools and one who’s already graduated. He’s the co-chair of a PAC supporting Humphreys and Santa Cruz.

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