Editor’s Note: Don’t boot DPS board hopefuls
Several of the more promising school board candidates for the Detroit Public Schools Community District have survived a challenge to their candidacy — for now. It would be a shame if they were kicked off the ballot just weeks before an election integral to the district’s future.
On Friday, a Wayne County Circuit Court judge dismissed several challenges aimed at keeping these individuals off the ballot. Following a Wayne County Election Commission hearing earlier in the week, two names were removed from the ballot since they did not include their precinct number on an affidavit of identity. State law requires that information, and the candidates should have made sure to complete everything perfectly, knowing such lawsuits could ensue. Another issue raised was over the residency of a candidate.
Penny Bailer and Mary Kovari, who are running as part of a four-member team that seeks to bring experience and accountability to the school board, were the main targets.
Both women boast solid records of working with schools and young people in Detroit. But Robert Davis, an activist and serial lawsuit filer, has set his sights on bringing them down. He is behind the challenges and, as expected, he has filed an emergency appeal with the state Court of Appeals. But the ballots have reportedly already been printed.
Davis certainly didn’t get a gold star when he was a Highland Park school board member. He was convicted of felony embezzlement, stealing nearly $200,000 from the financially distraught district.
Davis should leave these candidates alone and let Detroit voters decide who they want on the school board.