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CMS school board candidates in three districts. From left: Eric Davis, District 5; Richard McElrath, District 2; Gail Summerskill, District 1; Kimberly Mitchell-Walker, District 2; Rhonda Lennon, District 1; Susan Walker, District 5; and Robin Bradford, District 1.

Forum hears from 7 candidates for school board

Sept. 8, 2009

They were quizzed about how long they'd lived here, their party affiliation. They were asked for their thoughts on how racial divisons affect board decision-making. And trying to get beneath the noise, one questioner even asked them how they would talk to President Obama about his speech to students scheduled for later in the morning; or to a parent who refused to allow a child to hear the speech; or to a principal who had refused to have the speech shown to children.

The discussion was subdued, civil, occasionally humorous. Everything that school board discussions are reputed not to be.

All candidates in Districts 1, 2 and 5 were invited, and all attended. None are on the Sept. 15 primary ballot. Their elections will be held in November.

With many candidates and time limited, questioners showed some imagination. One asked each candidate to grade Supt. Peter Gorman. The results: Davis, A-. McElrath, C; Summerskill, B+; Mitchell-Walker, B; Lennon, B-; Walker, B; Bradford, C.

They were asked who in history they'd like to advice from for their campaign. The results; Davis: Abraman Lincoln; McElrath, Barack Obama; Summerskill: Elizabeth Cady Stanton; Mitchell-Walker: Rosa Parks; Rhonda Lennon, Julia Child; Walker: Pittsburgh vocational trainer Bill Strickland; Bradford: W.E.B. Du Bois.









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at the West Charlotte Recreation Center, 2222 Kendall Drive, Charlotte, NC
down the hill from West Charlotte High School.