I read with interest Ingrid Jacques’ column about Michigan Rep. Tim Kelly’s plan to dissolve the State of Michigan School Board and replace it with a board appointed by the Governor. Rep. Kelly’s reasoning for wanting to eliminate the School Board are a repugnant example of the poor quality of political leadership Michigan residents are seeing too much of.
Mr. Kelly states that one of his reasons for eliminating the Board is that they are “nameless and faceless,” and that Michigan’s residents do not know who is serving on the school board. Board members are elected to their positions and have to run for public office, just like Rep. Kelly. Until a few days ago, I could not have told you whether or not Mr. Kelly was employed as a politician, baker, policeman, etc. as he is not my state representative. By Rep. Kelly’s logic, the House of Representatives should be disbanded!
When I voted for state Board of Education members, I looked into their backgrounds and their positions on items pertaining to education. While I don’t know any of the folks I voted for personally, I felt confident I was making an informed choice, having done my research. This is called, “voting.”
It is too bad that Mr. Kelly has such low regard for voters as to think that, just because he does not know who he is working with in Lansing, other Michigan citizens must make uninformed decisions too. The scary thing is that Rep. Kelly is in the House of Representatives and is making decisions about education in our state. I hope that he is doing a better job of informing himself on the issues than he is of getting to know members of the State Board of Education.
Disbanding elected offices because one does not agree with their decisions would be an action expected of a tyrant and not of a democratically elected member of the House. Not knowing who one’s fellow elected officials are and blaming one’s ignorance on the parties in questions is simply foolish. Michigan residents need informed politicians who work to create effective governance with those from without as well as from within one’s chosen political party.
Here is a link to Ms. Jacques’ column in the Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/story/opinion/columnists/ingrid-jacques/2016/04/21/jacques-bid-state-board-education-farewell/83373052/