Eight candidates, four spots on NHC School Board

Reported by Jon Evans - bio | email

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – Voters will trim a crowded field of eight republican hopefuls to four in the primary for School Board in New Hanover County. Those eight candidates met Wednesday night at the American Legion Post 10 in Wilmington, looking to win support from potential voters.

The challengers to incumbents Janice Cavenaugh, Don Hayes and Ed Higgins shared strong opinions during the 90 minute forum.

Derrick Hickey said the culture of New Hanover County schools needs to change from "a culture of failure to a culture of success."

Stephanie Kraybill called the "No Child Left Behind" act "a flawed legislation" and hoped it would be modified.

In her closing statement, Julia Davis said schools in New Hanover County are "in worse shape now than they were ten years ago."

Laura Parks believes the school board should go outside its system to find a new superintendent to replace Dr. Al Lerch, who is retiring. Steve Bilzi told the audience he believes more passion and pro-active leadership are needed on the board.

Organizer David Hartley of the American Legion hoped the audience would become better informed about the candidates asking for their votes.

"Getting to know the candidate is very important," Hartley said during the forum. "It's better when you go to the ballot box and mark a name because you know what the person stands for."

The American Legion Post is hosting two other forums. On April 21st, candidates running for New Hanover County Commission will take questions. On April 28th, candidates for General Assembly and Judicial offices will meet in similar formats.

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