Highlands School Board race: a vote for civility
Voters sent a strong message to Highlands School Board on Tuesday.
They tossed out two of the board's majority faction -- Chris Salego and Bruce Figler -- in favor of a write-in slate.
Former Athletic Director Bill Heasley and former board member Karen Wantland compiled an impressive 3-1 vote margin over the incumbents.
Incumbent Laura Thimons won re-election, however, if unofficial returns hold, in a very close vote with write-in challenger Jeff Calarie.
So the new board apparently will have no clear majority. Which may be just what the doctor ordered.
There will be four board members allied with each of two different factions. And in Tarentum, Carrie Fox won and she is not allied with either faction. She will be a swing vote.
Residents deserve nine members who don't always vote in set factions. They need independent advocates who fight for the best education for students -- but who listen to the taxpayers, too.
The board majority lost two years ago in large part because it didn't listen to taxpayers. They built an expensive new $4 million football stadium that many taxpayers felt was excessive and which we opposed. Building renovations and updates every 20 years usually require tax increases, and taxpayers understand that. But not Taj Mahal additions.
We call on both sides to put down their swords.
This election was a mandate for civility. Residents are tired of the public bickering -- and that goes for both factions.
Discuss issues rationally -- and have the courage to admit a member from the other faction is right sometimes.
Stop the personal attacks and refighting last year's battles. Hire based on qualifications for the job, not on who someone knows. Agree to disagree on some issues and move on.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.