© 2024 WOSU Public Media
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Ohio Education Association Declares Success In School Board Races


School board races around Ohio in Tuesday’s election produced a variety of winners, both for and against mask mandates, but the Ohio Education Association is pleased with the results.

“Over 80% of our targeted candidates were successful,” says OEA President, Scott DiMauro. “By and large candidates who were focused on issues of meeting the needs of students, fulfilling our constitutional responsibilities as a state were successful.”

Since the pandemic began in 2020, school board meetings have been a flashpoint of controversy for parents who disagree with mask mandates.

“Those who were campaigning on divisive topics using race as a wedge issue, using COVID as a wedge issue were unsuccessful in many places across the state,” says DiMauro.

DiMauro points to Hilliard where school board candidate Kara Crowley who supported the decision to mandate masks won the most votes.

“The number 1 vote-getter was somebody who was very supportive of the school district and an educator herself,” says DiMauro. “So even there you know two people who were affiliated with this anti-mask group they weren’t the top vote-getter.”

DiMauro says he doesn’t think the hotly debated Critical Race Theory was a factor.

“It has been widely pointed out that Critical Race Theory isn’t something that’s being taught in schools,” says DiMauro. “But what needs to be happening is attention paid to meeting the needs of all students.” Which means paying attention to diversity, making sure that we’re inclusive in our curriculum and our instruction.”

DiMauro says Ohio voters generally made the right choices.

“Overall, as voters did their homework, they decided that they were supporting candidates that really cared about students and wanted to keep their public schools strong," says DiMauro.

Debbie Holmes has worked at WOSU News since 2009. She has hosted All Things Considered, since May 2021. Prior to that she was the host of Morning Edition and a reporter.