A Look At LA Board Of Elementary And Secondary Education Races

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Candidates for all eight Board of Elementary and Secondary Education seats are on Saturday's ballot in Louisiana.

         A look at how the races shape up:


DISTRICT 1: James Garvey, running for re-election in District 1, covering New Orleans suburbs north and south of Lake Pontchartrain, is endorsed by the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry. Retired teacher Lee Barrios is challenging him, with endorsements from the teacher unions. Both are Republicans.


DISTRICT 2: Kira Orange Jones, the incumbent among three Democrats in New Orleans-based District 2, is backed by LABI and Democrats for Education Reform. She is executive director of Teach for America in New Orleans. The unions are backing Kara Washington, a public school assistant principal.


DISTRICT 3: If Chas Roemer in District 6 was the best-known voice supporting the changes won by self-styled reformers in recent years, then Lottie Beebe of Breaux Bridge, running for re-election in District 3, was perhaps the most vocal opponent. She is a critic of the state's embrace of Common Core, charter schools and vouchers. Beebe is endorsed by the teacher unions; her opponent, Sandy LeBlanc Holloway, is endorsed by LABI. Both are Republicans. The district covers much of southeast Louisiana, including coastal parishes.


DISTRICT 4: Three Republicans are running in northwest Louisiana's District 4, where school principal Mary Harris was appointed to finish an unexpired term. Harris, a Common Core opponent, is listed as a "favorable candidate" by the unions as she seeks a full term. So is teacher and Common Core critic Glynis Johnston. LABI is backing Tony Davis.


DISTRICT 5: Another north Louisiana seat is being vacated by Common Core supporter Jay Guillot. LABI is endorsing candidate Gary Jones in District 5; the unions, Johnny Fatheree. Both are Republicans.


DISTRICT 6: Perhaps the highest-profile BESE member to support Common Core multistate education standards has been Chas Roemer, but he is stepping down from his post representing Baton Rouge-based District 6. Roemer recently endorsed Jason Engen, a Republican, who also is endorsed by the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry. The association supports Common Core and has endorsed teacher Laree Taylor. Teacher unions — which criticize Common Core as well as the state's test-reliant school accountability system — have given favorable ratings to three candidates: libertarian education blogger Jason France and Republicans Kathy Edmonston and Etta Licciardi.


DISTRICT 7: Teacher Holly Boffy of Lafayette has been a supporter of charters, the accountability program and Common Core. She is endorsed by LABI for re-election in District 7. Fellow Republican Mike Kreamer is challenging her and has the union endorsement.


DISTRICT 8: Democrats for Education Reform and business interests are backing Democrat Jada Lewis in a bid to oust union-backed incumbent Democrat Carolyn Hill in District 8.




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