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Patchen: Voting for school board means selecting education-minded candidates


As a registered Independent, I really couldn’t care less about the political leanings of the Scottsdale Unified School Board candidates. Far more important is electing experienced professionals who care about our public schools, our teachers and our kids without getting themselves caught up in culture wars that distract the board from doing the work at hand.

After conducting a lot of research, I’ve concluded that Mike Sharkey, Donna Lewis, and Matt Pittinsky are three such candidates. Each has exhibited an incredible devotion and years of actual experience in education. Each is business minded, entrepreneurial, and use common sense to support academic excellence, financial efficiencies, and creative growth opportunities. I encourage my fellow Scottsdale residents to consider their candidacy.

But regardless of who is elected, please show our school board members the respect they deserve. They have our kids' best interests at heart. Don't accuse anyone of nefarious activities, don't threaten them personally, and don't grandstand at meetings. If we can support our board's efforts and keep them focused on what teachers need to be successful, our children will thrive.