By Matt Mackinder
Clarkston News Editor
Amanda Love is hoping to gain a seat on the Clarkston Community Schools Board of Education this November, and simply wants to bring to the table the many concerns local parents have.
Terms for Greg Need and Cheryl McGinnis expire in November.
“I have decided to run because I love our community and our schools. I have seen firsthand the importance our elected school board members have on our children, our parents, and the future of this country,” Love said. “The determining factors were plentiful. When I was forced to homeschool my children with learning disabilities and special needs, there wasn’t a day that went by when one, if not all of us, were in tears wishing the schools would re-open. After that, the forced masking on children with autism, ADHD, oral fixation, etcetera, caused us issues almost daily.
“Then, when I was given the run around about where the massive federal COVID-19 budget windfall was going, because it was not going to helping my kids, I knew we needed a transparent leader to step up and fight for our kids.”
Love also said she doesn’t think the school board has acted “in the best interest of our children or represented the constituents they are supposed to represent over the last two years.”
“I’m not faulting the uniformed decisions made by the board in March 2020,” said Love. “I am faulting the board for the fact Clarkston schools were shut down well into year 2021 and mandatory masking has been in place until recently. Kids need to be in school and masks and vaccines need to be optional. Children in their formative years need to be socialized and they need to see their peers and teachers faces. The CDC has lowered the speech milestone for early childhood and data is showing that more than one in three children who started school during the pandemic in grades Kindergarten through third grade need intensive reading help. We still have yet to see the full effects of this massive and debilitating loss of learning.
“In addition, I believe we should have seen more transparency from the board. For example, we should have seen exactly where the extra (approximately $12.6 million) COVID-19 funding went. What was provided during the school board meetings was very vague. We should have allocated more quality help for kids and paid more to our support staff such as paraprofessionals, reading interventionists, etcetera.”
Another aspect Love is not overly fond with is that the board “always seems to be in sync on their voting and there doesn’t seem to be much healthy debate amongst the members.” “Clearly, they are not discussing and debating from the point of view that many fellow parents share with me,” Love said. “I believe every viewpoint should be heard at the meetings. After all, ‘Where we all think alike no one thinks very much,’ according to Walter Lippmann.
“I like how the members of the Clarkston school board are service-oriented individuals who give up their time for the Community. As such, I can respect them for their service, but you cannot bring yourself to agree with them.”
If elected, Love said she hopes to bring a common-sense pro-parent philosophy to the board.
“No matter what your political affiliation, parents in Clarkston want and have the right to know what their child is being taught in school at every grade level,” said Love. “We can mostly agree there is no place for CRT (Critical Race Theory) or DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) in our schools, but we need a leader on the board who is vigilant enough to realize there is no place for whatever Clarkston decides to call CRT/DEI, or all other forms of indoctrination, that week.”
Does Love feel her voice would make a difference if elected this year?
“Absolutely,” she said. “I am one of many thousands of frustrated parents in the Clarkston School District. There are several Facebook groups who have several hundred (CPU – Clarkston Parents United) to over a thousand (CSPA – Clarkston Schools Parent Advocates) members in the district. Also, when I am knocking on doors and talking with parents at grassroots events to gain support in Clarkston. There are countless parents who feel unheard. I also hear from others in our community who are not on Facebook and want a voice on the Clarkston School Board that represents them. I am running to be their voice.
“Once the people’s voices are heard, vocalized and represented, the board will be forced to change in the most positive and transparent way.”
Since she announced her candidacy for the school board, Love said the response to her bid has been phenomenal.
“Passionate would be an understatement,” said Love. “I’ve never felt so much love and support, and I am truly humbled. For the first time, people are paying attention to school board races. We all unfortunately have seen firsthand the damage bad policy on the board can do to our children. People are angry over the last two-plus years and people are not forgetting and won’t accept the re-writing of history. Traditionally, raising money for a school board race would be difficult and last priority. Not this year. We have the momentum with us and will outwork any challenger to our pro-parent and pro-child message.”
On the home front, Love and her husband Sam have a blended family that includes five children, Scarlett, Camden, Marcella, Talon, and Carter.
For more information, visit ElectAmandaLove.com or Amanda Love for Clarkston School Board on Facebook.
Back in the summer of 2021, David Meyer announced his running for a school board seat. Last week, Meyer announced he was withdrawing from the race.
“Some of you may be wondering, and some have even asked, ‘what happened to David Meyer?’ (Others may be saying “Who’s David?’ That’s okay, too!) The last few months, I have had many changes, both personally and professionally. And my schedule has simply been jam-packed. I, unfortunately, have not been able to give my board candidacy the attention it needs and deserves.
“Since September of 2020, I have been entertaining the idea of running for our school board. I know our board needs a strong conservative change. The current board makeup simply does not reflect our community or its values. The education of our children is suffering because of it, as our current board has put social issues ahead of educational rigor. It is for this reason that I have been running. Our community needed it.
“Recently, it has become clear that while our community needs conservative change, that change cannot be me. I have decided to withdraw my candidacy for CCS Board of Education. However, I would not do so without incredibly capable candidates in place. If you have not already met them, it is with great pleasure and respect that I support and endorse both Amanda Love and Christy Giampetroni. These women are sharp, conservative women with a strong heart for our kids and their education. I strongly encourage you to support them as well.I truly appreciate all of your support thus far, and I hope you will join me in support of our next board trustees Amanda Love and Christy Giampetroni.”