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Threats and harassment: A year in the life of a school board member

Signs for school board candidates in Delaware, Ohio.
Jo Ingles
Statehouse News Bureau
Signs for school board candidates in Delaware, Ohio.

Once-quiet school board meetings where decisions are made over tax levies and teacher contracts have now become battlegrounds for masking policies and critical race theory. School board members have come under attack, and in many cases, police are called in to escort speakers out of meetings.

Some members have received threats through social media. Others have decided the stress of serving is simply no longer worth it and have walked away from the seat.

Races for school board have been hotly contested this election cycle with huge interest in the races. As the Ohio Public Radio Statehouse News Bureau reports, the state has seen a 50% increase in candidates running compared to four years ago.

In the run up to the election this Nov. 2, we examine what school board members have been facing, and the challenges of serving these past 19 months under a pandemic.

Joining Cincinnati Edition are Forest Hills School Board Member Leslie Rasmussen, Ph.D.; Milford School Board Member Emily Chesnut; and Ohio Public Radio Statehouse News Bureau reporter Jo Ingles.

Listen to Cincinnati Edition live at noon M-F. Audio for this segment will be uploaded after 4 p.m. ET.

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