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(Video: Fox News)
In a possible foreshadowing of a red wave in November, conservative candidates swept the school board elections on Tuesday in Waukesha, Wisconsin.
Boosting student achievement was apparently the common denominator in the victories of the three Republican-backed Waukesha winners.
Perhaps a silver lining of the pandemic, if there is one, is that grassroots parents became knowledgeable about the misplaced priorities of stubborn incumbent school boards and how they need to get more directly involved to counter that.
One of the conservative trio, mom-of-three Karrie Kozlowski told “Fox & Friends” co-host Ainsley Earhardt in the clip embedded above that “I think we’re at a big crossroads where parents, grandparents in the community are just tired of our children not getting the academic education that they need.
“The fundamental education of English, language arts, math, science, and social studies: These are the expectations that we as parents and grandparents believe our children are receiving when they are in school,” she added.
Unfortunately, kids in Waukesha local schools are falling behind, with up to 60 percent of them lacking proficiency in any subject, she explained, and the school board was part of the problem.
“This is a trend for the school district of Waukesha that’s been going on for six to 10 years. Knowing that the incumbents that were sitting on the board were part of that the whole time. It’s frightening; it was disappointing. We’re at a point that our children are not college-ready. They’re not trades-ready; they’re not ready for the world. That has to change,” she said.
Kozlowski added that critical race theory (CRT) was not the primary issue although she did assert that CRT “is embedded” in the school district and state of Wisconsin professional development training, despite what Democrats claim. “So if the training is happening at the professional level, it is gonna trickle into the classroom. It’s there.”
The newly elected school board member detailed that academic performance is priority number one, along with curriculum transparency, accountability for teachers and students, as well as proper stewardship of the budget.
“We need transparency for the parents to understand what we’re taught…The big pieces for us are teachers are accountable to educate our children. Not indoctrinate. Our students are accountable for their actions and behaviors. And that’s a different piece that we are hearing loud from our teachers is that student behavior has become a real problem within the classrooms. And then third, it’s fiscal responsibility. We got a budget; how we manage our taxpayer dollars is very important. And it needs to be pushed to the teachers and the students inside the classrooms. Not above it with an administration and overhead cost. We really need to be wise about pushing the funding to the students. It’s their education that we care most about.,” she summarized.
Kenosha County goes red after destructive BLM riots, elects Republican for first time in decades https://t.co/iTirRJ3WIA
— Jack Furnari (@JackBPR) April 6, 2022
In other results on Tuesday, conservative Waukesha County Judge Maria Lazar defeated Judge Lori Kornblum for a seat on the Wisconsin court of appeals. Kornblum was the incumbent in the Waukesha-based court district.
And Kenosha County, Wisc., elected Samantha Kerkman, its first Republican county executive in decades.
GOP-backed candidates also won school board seats in the Milwaukee suburbs.
Kozlowski declined to speculate about whether the conservative school board wins are a precursor for November election results. “I would love to think so,” she admitted, however.
As far as the local results are concerned, “It was overwhelming, very humbling that the community is really making a loud stance and a clear message. We need change. The education needs to change,” she said.
Kozlowski’s two colleagues Mark Borowski and Marquell Moorer echoed her views on “Fox & Friends First.”
“I think the issues that we ran on really resonated with parents and residents in the district,” Borowski said. “We need to improve student achievement in our district. It’s been on a decline for years…that was the number-one issue. We also talked about parental rights and transparency in school, so they know what is going on, and really thirdly, most important, our budget. We need to look at our budget and how is it supporting student achievement,” Borowski said.
“My victory sends a message of basically reclaiming our reputation of our school district by raising expectations for all of our kids regardless of our identities, ensuring that all of our kids are on grade level, making sure we get back to the basics of teaching fundamental academics and not any rhetoric or any ideology that may not align with the values of the people of Waukesha,” Moorer added in response to a question from the FNC host about the divisive nature of the opposition.
He also suggested that more concerned parents, regardless of partisanship, will be getting involved in local elections across the country. “This is the year of the parents, and this is the year for our kids.”
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Democrats criticized the trio during the campaign for their association with the GOP and for their opposition to CRT.
“But the Republican-backed candidates argued their concerns were about falling academic performances in local schools, and countered that the local school board has lagged under a liberal bias out of touch with parent concerns,” the outlet reported.
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