David Kilada, ORTL PAC Guest Columnist
“I wanted to help but didn’t know there was an election.” Those were the words of a parent upset about what was happening in his kids’ schools but had no idea the deadline to file to run for school board was approaching.
After years of working on campaigns, I am confident most voters are not aware of the power they have over what happens in their schools, despite most being unhappy with how things are. At Oregon Right to Life, our challenge is to make people aware of the ways we can change the status quo, starting with the upcoming May 2023 School Board election.
Here are three key facts about why school boards are critically important:
1. Your school board is responsible for who teaches your kids. In some districts, Planned Parenthood has been brought into classrooms. School boards can stop that.
2. Your school board can help keep out curriculum that pushes pro-abortion agendas.
3. Under Oregon law, minors can receive healthcare without parental consent and have it billed to their parents’ insurance without notification. This legal framework is why School Based Health Centers (SBHCs) are being pushed. Some districts like Salem-Keizer are making plans to install SBHCs to help facilitate the transportation of students to healthcare — which is up to the SBHC to define. SBHCs are implemented at the board level.
While there are barriers ahead for anyone who steps up to serve, they are barriers we can beat.
School board elections are nonpartisan, meaning voters will have very little information about the candidates. Most, sadly, will not vote. Any coordinated effort to get out the vote (GOTV) for our pro-life candidates will have a huge impact. In the past, Oregon Right to Life’s GOTV efforts have more than doubled turnout in nonpartisan elections.
This means you are the reason for pro-life victories. We can do it again.
The deadline to file for the next election is March 16, 2023.