by Superintendent Luke Francois

As of this writing, it is Tuesday morning, election day. There is no telling what today will bring surrounding local, state, and national election outcomes allowing me a unique opportunity to share my thoughts about public service and elections without politicizing the points made.

When it comes to public service, I can think of no higher calling than to serve in our military.  My brother and brother-in-law are veterans, and I am most appreciative of their sacrifices personally and onto their families. Their service allowed me an understanding of the importance of service to our country and protecting the individual and collective freedoms that some take for granted.  We have the freedom to assemble, speak freely, and elect our representatives without fear of persecution.

The election process decides who shall serve governmental agencies. From the election of the president, to state senators and representatives, to local mayors, to school boards, the election process is much the same. If one stops to think about it, at the core of all elections are school board elections as they represent the most fundamental unit of government when compared to other elected offices that serve a broader constituency.

Choosing to run for elected office is a big deal. Any person that accepts the opportunity to serve their local constituency should be commended and thanked for their candidacy. In the wrestling community, there is an old saying that it is better to have wrestled and lost than never to have wrestled at all. So it is with school board candidacy. It is better to declare candidacy than never to declare at all.

So what about the rest of us? We have an equally important responsibility. We have the responsibility of being part of democracy by exercising a right to vote. Fundamentally, everything depends on elections to shape the course of our governmental agencies, be it at the local school board level or on the national platform. As this column will arrive post-election, this is an opportunity to reflect on whether or not you engaged in a civic duty to serve by casting a vote.

And perhaps that’s the point. Whether serving in our military that provides for freedoms, to include elections, or serving as a candidate in an election, or exercising the right to vote, we all have a duty, a responsibility, a calling to be part of our great democracy.

I wish to extend my sincere appreciation, gratitude, and congratulations to the candidates in our local school board election.