Two sitting Cabarrus County Board of Education members will face off against six others for three seats in the Nov. 4 election.
Cabarrus News offered each candidate the opportunity to answer five questions via email surrounding budget cuts, teacher salaries and the district’s greatest assets.
The candidates, in alphabetical order, are: Carolyn Carpenter, Tom Clark, Tim Furr, Blake Kiger, Andrea Palo, Vince Powell, Horace Stainback and Denver Walker.
Carpenter and Kiger are sitting board members running for re-election; Furr and Palo have served on the school board in the past. Clark and Walker did not respond to the questionnaire after multiple emails and phone calls.
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Increasing the district’s teacher retention rate, planning for potential budget cuts and expanding on the school’s growing reputation of being an innovative education system rank among candidates’ top priorities.
Some candidates also shared their opinions on the Nov. 4 school bond referendum for up to $20 million in low-interest general obligation bonds. Municipalities use bonds of that type to finance capital projects that are beyond the scope of the annual operating budget. They are backed by the county’s tax revenue.
The school bonds would provide up to $11 million to replace Royal Oaks Elementary in Kannapolis (the school is part of the Cabarrus County Schools district). The community college bonds would provide up to $9 million to construct a new Advanced Technology Center for Rowan-Cabarrus Community College.
Last summer the Cabarrus County Board of Commissioners adopted bond orders and resolutions calling for the bond referendums on the Nov. 4 ballot.