Here’s Who’s Running for 4 Detroit School Board Seats

Two former board presidents, a few former educators, several tenured teachers, parents and a recent graduate are among 17 candidates vying for four open Detroit school board seats in what could be a back-to-back election for the city’s school district. .

The seven-member board oversees and sets policy for the Detroit Public Schools Community District, which educates nearly 49,000 students. With more than half of the four-year seats open for the Nov. 8 general election, the new board members could impact Superintendent Nikolai Vitti’s efforts to deal with pandemic-related enrollment losses. , chronic absenteeism and poor school performance. Vitti, who was hired in 2017 to turn around the struggling district, has enjoyed broad support among board members.

Three of the four incumbents facing the end of their terms — current board chair Angelique Peterson-Mayberry, vice-chair Deborah Hunter-Harvill and member Corletta J. Vaughn — are running for re-election.

The other incumbent, Georgia Lemmons, who was elected in 2016, was not on a list of candidates the city clerk’s office provided to Chalkbeat Tuesday night after the filing deadline. Her husband, LaMar Lemmons, whose name is on the nominee list, said he and his wife filed together. The Clerk’s Office could not be reached for comment.

LaMar and Georgia Lemmons were elected together in 2016 to the first council to oversee the new Detroit Public Schools Community District. As part of a legislative agreement that year, Detroit’s public schools were split in two, with the new district focusing on student education and the old district on raising tax revenue and reimbursing student fees. the debt. This agreement ended years of state-controlled emergency management, during which the council had little power. Lemons also sat on this board.

Other notable candidates include Iris Taylor, a former chair of the board who was unsuccessful in 2020 when she ran for re-election. Another former board member, Ida Short, is also running again.

Candidates had until 4 p.m. on July 26 to apply. Here is the full list of school board nominees provided by the Detroit Clerk’s Office:

  • Monique Bryant: The Detroit native is the co-founder and president of The Triangle Society, a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising funds for Cass Technical High School.
  • Regina Ann Campbell: A graduate and relative of DPSCD, she works as an economic developer in the public non-profit sector. She is also a longtime volunteer for Detroit Schools.
  • Richard Clément: When he came to the school board in 2020, he was an IT consultant. He has previous experience as a precinct delegate, candidate for state office, and political volunteer.
  • Patrice Douglas: The lifelong Detroiter is an organizer for the Michigan Democratic Party.
  • Bessie Harris: Now retired, she has 33 years of experience as an educator, special education teacher and principal. She ran but was not elected to the board in the 2020 general election.
  • Ridgeley Hudson Jr.: A 2020 graduate of Martin Luther King Jr. High School, he is a former school culture facilitator for DPSCD.
  • Deborah Hunter-Harvill: Outgoing and current Vice President of the Board, she was first elected to the Board in November 2016. She was Director of DPSCD and previously served as School Superintendent in the Buena School District Vista, now dissolved.
  • LaMar Lemmons: Former Chairman of the Board who served on the Board during Emergency Management and during the creation of the DPSCD. He served in the Michigan Legislature and is chief of staff to State Senator Betty Jean Alexander.
  • Latrice McClendon: Chalkbeat could not reach McClendon
  • Aliya Moore: She is a parent leader and active parent in the district who provides frequent commentary at Detroit school board meetings.
  • Jamaal Muhammad: Former second year teacher at DPSCD, he now works as a tennis agent.
  • Reba Neely: Chalkbeat could not reach Neely
  • Angelique Peterson-Mayberry: Past President and Board Chair was first elected in 2016. She is the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Employee Experience Strategist for Manufacturing of Ford Motor Company.
  • Ida Simmons Short: She has served on the board before, including during emergency management. She ran again in 2020. She is an English teacher and teaches full-time at Schoolcraft College and part-time at Wayne County Community College District.
  • Iris Taylor: The former board member led the board as chair from 2017 until she lost her bid for re-election in 2020. When she ran for the re-election, she was a health care consultant and retired president of DMC Detroit Receiving Hospital and University. Health center.
  • John Telford: The longtime retired educator served as Superintendent of Detroit Public Schools when the district was under emergency management. He has run for the board before, most recently in 2020.
  • Corletta Vaughn: The incumbent was elected to the board in 2018. She is a bishop and leads Holy Ghost Cathedral Church.

Grace Tucker is Chalkbeat Detroit’s new reporting intern. Contact her at [email protected]

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