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Two Groups Supporting Separate School Board Candidates

Leading up to the Nov. 6 election, two political action committees (PAC) are supporting two separate Jefferson County Board of Education candidates. The Bluegrass Fund--formed this year to offer support to alternative candidates from those backed by the teachers union’s Better Schools Kentucky PAC--recently announced its endorsement for District 4 candidate Chuck Haddaway, and in a new radio ad airing this week is also supporting District 7 candidate Jonathan Robertson.“As parents with children in public schools they know we can’t wait until later to solve these problems. We must take action now,” the radio advertisement says.Robertson does however have a child in private school also. The ad goes on to call Robertson and Haddaway the real “reform minded voice for change for our students.”What those reforms are the ad doesn’t say, but it does mention at one point that students are spending more time on buses than in the classroom. However, neither the Bluegrass Fund nor Better Schools Kentucky is endorsing candidates that support changing the student assignment plan, which buses students around the district for diversity.Also running in District 7 is Marty Bell, James Sexton, Chris Fell and Chris Brady, who is supported by Better Schools Kentucky.In District 4 the candidates are Chester Flake, Missy Smith, Eric Bullock and Lloyd “Chip” White, who is supported by Better Schools Kentucky.District 2 is also up for election but neither PAC are giving that district priority.School board races have been criticized for lacking community interest and competition. This year, 14-candidates are actively vying for three open seats in Jefferson County. This is partly because no incumbents are running this year. According to the Kentucky School Board Association, incumbents are running in 85 percent of the school board races statewide.