Republican or Democrat? What Difference Does It Make?

It's About Students! I'm an independent with no party affiliation

While on the campaign trail… 

Several days ago I received a somewhat frantic call. In a demanding tone and without a greeting, the caller abruptly asked —“Are you a republican or democrat?”  I replied, “Good morning, sir, may I have your name?” He seemed upset and asked whether I was watching the Kavanaugh hearings. Having responded “yes,” the caller said, “If you are a republican, I’m not voting for you!”

I was slightly taken aback but could appreciate his frustration given the divisive political climate we live in today. I told the caller that I had no political affiliation or endorsement—democrat or republican. I assured him I was a registered independent and was funding my own campaign. I told him that my focus lies with the issues that matter to students, not the politics. Before ending the call, he hesitated slightly and warned me that he intended to verify my affiliation with the Voting Registrar. I wish the caller would have allowed me the opportunity to elaborate further. Here’s what I would have said:

Our children’s priorities will continue to be compromised when our elected trustees our bound to a duty of loyalty to their political supporters and special interest groups. It’s a clear conflict of interest. Our present board majority is supported by the teacher’s union, the SDFA. We also have republican-endorsed candidates who will often support some republican policy and agenda. Either way, their decisions are biased regardless of what is best for our children. 

Here are some common questions that I hear from parents: 

  • Why don’t we have late start on a regular basis?
  • Why do students only have 8-minute breaks after a 90-minute lecture?
  • Why does hazing and bullying persist against students?
  • Why are class sizes so high, with 40, 45 or more students?

All excellent questions, and yet, the answer is the same: A bias towards some special-interest agenda and a lack of leadership. Perhaps ironically, some of the decisions are made to the benefit of special interests but to the detriment of teachers. As an independent, I have no party agenda. I focus on making the best decisions for our students, their well-being and success. Students and their parents must be central to any decision making.

Together, we can shift our school board’s culture to be student centric!  

Lea Wolf:  Integrity. Transparency. Compassion.

“ Taxpayers and students need an independent representative who will look out for their interests…
a parent of a district student…with fresh ideas.
Lea is an outspoken voice for students and their parents… one of the few that dares to speak out.
Lea has the courage, commitment, and integrity to be a student-centered trustee.”

John Salazar, SDUHSD Board Trustee

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