Editorial: Vote Aug. 28: do you want an elected city school board or not?

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It’s time to vote again. This time the vote isn’t for who will represent your voice in government – not yet, at least. This vote is whether you want an elected city school board for the Phenix City School System. Currently, the Phenix City Board of Education is appointed by the Phenix City Council. On Tuesday, you get to decide to leave it that way or elect your own individuals for the board.

Currently, members of the community elect the Russell County and Lee County boards of education. All county schools in the state are elected and 22 of the state’s 71 city school boards are elected.

If Phenix City citizens vote to switch to an elected school board, the board will be composed of seven members, two from each of the three city council districts and one in an at-large capacity. Candidates must reside in the district they represent for 365 consecutive days immediately preceding the deadline date for qualifying as a candidate and for the entire term of office, which is four years. Candidates must be at least 21 years old, may not be an employee of the board of have a record of conviction for any crime involving “moral turpitude.” The election of the board of education will coincide with the city council election in 2020.

Finally, elected board members will be compensated $500 per month for their service – a figure that will come out of the school system’s budget.

So what do you choose? Continue to allow the elected city council to appoint members of the school board, or put the decision in the hands of the community?

The polls will be open Aug. 28 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET at the following locations:

District 1, Roy Martin Recreation Center, 110 Airport Road.

District 2, C Club Gym, 1500 15th St.

District 3, Calvin Spencer Recreation Center, 400 Eighth Ave.

By Denise DuBois, Executive Editor