School board filing to begin, incumbents running

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 21, 2016

By Rebecca Rider

SALISBURY — Three seats may be up for the Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education, but incumbents say they’re not giving up yet.

Filing for the board’s elections, to be held in November, begins at noon Friday.

Up for election this year are:

• Seat 5 (Salisbury area), occupied by Chuck Hughes.

• Seat 3 (east area), occupied by board Chairman Josh Wagner.

• Seat 7 (southeast area), occupied by Susan Cox.

All three incumbents say they will run for re-election this fall, citing projects and initiatives they want to see through.

“I think there’s a lot of things we have to follow through on,” Hughes said.

Hughes cited a pilot restorative classroom program and a recently begun discussion on districtwide open enrollment, while Wagner mentioned the district’s long range plan for the system and its strategic plan, which focuses on literacy.

Cox, who served on the committee to design the restorative classroom program and was recently appointed to the N.C. Committee of Practitioners to advise the state Board of Education on the Every Student Succeeds Act, said she’d like to continue advocating for local control and teacher retention.

But it’s been a tumultuous four years, as well.

“It’s been very interesting,” Wagner said of his time on the board.

The current board has been through the planning and construction of a hotly contested central office building, the decision to merge Cleveland and Woodleaf elementaries, bringing in iPads and laptops for every student with the one-to-one initiative and starting a rocky discussion about the potential closing of several area elementary schools.

Two contenders — Andrew Poston and Mike Julian — have already declared their intent to run for the southeastern and eastern seats, respectively. Those interested in filing must reside in the area in which they plan to run.

Filing begins at noon Friday, and ends at noon on Friday, Aug. 19. Candidates should file at the Rowan County Board of Elections, in Suite D10 at West End Plaza, 1935 Jake Alexander Blvd., West. There is a $5 filing fee. Direct filing questions to 704-216-8140.

Contact reporter Rebecca Rider at 704-797-4264.