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Des Moines Public Schools elections (2013)

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2013 Des Moines Public Schools Elections

General Election date:
September 10, 2013
Table of Contents
About the district
Method of election
Elections
What was at stake?
Key deadlines
Additional elections
External links
References
See also
Iowa
Des Moines Public Schools
Polk County, Iowa ballot measures
Local ballot measures, Iowa
Flag of Iowa.png

Four seats on the Board of Directors for Des Moines Public Schools were up for election on September 10, 2013. Seats up for election covered Districts 2 and 4 as well as two at-large seats.

A significant issue facing Des Moines Public Schools in this election was the controversial resignation of former Superintendent Nancy Sebring in 2012.

About the district

See also: Des Moines Public Schools, Iowa
Des Moines Public Schools is located in Polk County, Iowa
Des Moines Public Schools is located in Polk County, Iowa. The county seat of Polk County is Des Moines. Polk County is home to 430,640 residents, according to the United States Census Bureau.[1]

Demographics

Polk County outperformed the rest of Iowa in terms of its median rates of average household income, poverty and higher education achievement in 2011. The median household income in Polk County was $57,473 compared to $50,451 for the state of Iowa. The poverty rate in Polk County was 10.6% compared to 11.9% for the entire state. The US Census also found that 33.8% of Polk County residents aged 25 years and older attained a bachelor's degree compared to 24.9% in Iowa.[2]

Racial Demographics, 2012[2]
Race Polk County (%) Iowa (%)
White 80.1 88.0
Black or African American 6.4 3.2
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.5 0.5
Asian 3.8 2.0
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0.1 0.1
Two or More Races 2.1 1.6
Hispanic or Latino 7.9 5.3

Party Affiliation, 2013[3]
Party Registered Voters  % of Total
Democratic 107,630 38.7
Republican 83,853 30.2
Unaffiliated 85,819 30.9
Other 638 0.2

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one- or two-tenths off from being exactly 100 percent.[4] This Ballotpedia page provides a more detailed explanation of how the Census Bureau handles race and ethnicity in its surveys.

Method of board member selection

The Des Moines Board of Directors consists of seven members elected to four-year terms. All seven members of the board were at-large members prior to the election, but the district has begun to transition to a mixture of at-large and geographic district seats. Two at-large seats became the District 2 and 4 seats in 2013, and two more at-large seats will become District 1 and 3 seats in 2015. There was no primary election for the school board election and the general election was held on September 10, 2013. Two at-large seats and seats for Districts 2 and 4 were on the ballot in 2013. One at-large seat and seats in Districts 1 and 3 are on the ballot on September 8, 2015.[5]

Individuals interested in running for the board began circulating nominating petitions on July 8, 2013. The filing deadline for the 2013 general election was August 1 and candidates had until August 6 to officially withdraw from the ballot. Each candidate had to file a notarized candidate affidavit and nomination petitions with at least 50 valid signatures to the board secretary.[5]

Elections

2013

Candidates

[edit]
  • Connie Boesen
    • Incumbent
    • Attended Grand View College
    • Owner, Applishus, Inc.
  • Joe Jongewaard
    • Incumbent
    • Graduate, Iowa State University
    • Project Manager, Iowa Department of Economic Development
  • Heather Ryan
    • Graduate, Drake University
    • Talent Mentor, Ryan Talent Group
  • Shane Schulte
    • Graduate, Drake University
    • Senior Project Manager, Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
  • Teree Caldwell-Johnson
    • Incumbent
    • Graduate, University of Kansas
    • CEO, Oakridge Neighborhood and Oakridge Neighborhood Services
  • Darlene Blake
    • Graduate, Minnesota State University, Mankato
    • Chair, Greater Des Moines Sister Cities Commission

Election results

Des Moines Public Schools, At-large General Election, 4-year term, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngConnie Boesen Incumbent 24.4% 2,838
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngRob X. Barron 23.2% 2,699
     Nonpartisan Joe Jongewaard Incumbent 22.9% 2,671
     Nonpartisan Shane Schulte 19.3% 2,251
     Nonpartisan Heather Ryan 9.2% 1,076
     Nonpartisan Write-in votes 1% 120
Total Votes 11,655
Source: Polk County Auditor, "School Board Election," accessed September 14, 2013


Des Moines Public Schools, District 2 General Election, 4-year term, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngToussaint Cheatom 52.9% 607
     Nonpartisan Ed Linebach, III 46.5% 534
     Nonpartisan Write-in votes 0.6% 7
Total Votes 1,148
Source: Polk County Auditor, "School Board Election," accessed September 14, 2013


Des Moines Public Schools, District 4 General Election, 4-year term, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngTeree Caldwell-Johnson Incumbent 41.7% 522
     Nonpartisan Joel Doyle 31.4% 393
     Nonpartisan Darlene Blake 26.1% 327
     Nonpartisan Write-in votes 0.7% 9
Total Votes 1,251
Source: Polk County Auditor, "School Board Election," accessed September 14, 2013

Endorsements

On August 7, the Des Moines Education Association endorsed incumbents Joe Jongewaard and Teree Caldwell-Johnson and challengers Shane Schulte and Toussaint Cheatom.[6] On August 19, the AFSCME Iowa Council 61 endorsed incumbents Joe Jongewaard and Teree Caldwell-Johnson and challengers Rob X. Barron and Toussaint Cheatom.[7] Barron has also received several endorsements from other local unions, politicians and former members of the Des Moines school board.[8]

Campaign finance

A total of $30,893.27 was contributed to all direct candidate campaign committees.

In the at-large race, a total of $29,196.27 was contributed to all direct candidate campaign committees.[9]

Candidate Contributions Expenditures Cash on hand
Connie Boesen $5,445.00 $3,709.16 $1,735.84
Joe Jongewaard $13,015.00 $5,294.82 $7,720.18
Rob X. Barron $8,570.27 $5,445.72 $3,124.55
Heather Ryan $0 $0 $0
Shane Schulte $2,166.00 $4,321.09 -$2,155.09

In the District 2 race, a total of $1,697 was contributed to all direct candidate campaign committees.[9]

Candidate Contributions Expenditures Cash on hand
Toussaint Cheatom $1,697.00 $1,344.38 $352.62
Ed Linebach, III $0 $0 $0

In the District 4 race, no candidates reported contributions to their direct campaign committees.[9]

Candidate Contributions Expenditures Cash on hand
Teree Caldwell-Johnson $0 $0 $0
Darlene Blake $0 $0 $0
Joel Doyle $0 $0 $0

Past elections

What was at stake?

There were four seats on the school board up for election on September 10, 2013. Incumbents Connie Boesen, Teree Caldwell-Johnson and Joe Jongewaard sought re-election to the board while fellow incumbent and current Chair Dick Murphy did not file for re-election, thereby ensuring that the election would result in a change of board leadership. Boesen and Jongewaard faced three challengers for two at-large seats. Rob X. Barron, Heather Ryan and Shane Schulte filed for the at-large race, while Ed Linebach and Toussaint Cheatom filed for the new District 2 seat. Caldwell-Johnson, Darlene Blake and Joel Doyle filed for the new District 4 seat.[10]

Issues

The most significant issue in the election was the controversy surrounding former Superintendent Nancy Sebring's resignation in May, 2012. At the time, the Des Moines Register reported that Sebring had "inappropriately used the district’s technology to send and receive sexually explicit messages."[11] On May 10, 2012, the Board of Directors held a closed session for which the meeting agenda stated that they intended "to evaluate the professional competency of an individual whose appointment, hiring, performance or discharge is being considered when necessary to prevent needless and irreparable injury to that individual’s reputation.”[12]

Sebring filed a lawsuit against Des Moines Public Schools Board Director Teree Caldwell-Johnson, Community Relations Director Phil Roeder, and General Counsel Patricia Lantz on June 27, 2013, alleging that they had "either individually or working in concert, wrongfully undertook steps to ensure the purely personal and private emails would come to the attention of the Des Moines Register and to the public."[13] The American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa, on behalf of former board member Graham Gillette, has filed a separate lawsuit against the board to force the district to release the recording of the May 10, 2013 closed session to the public.[12] At-large candidate and district parent Heather Ryan began an anti-incumbent "Bounce the Board" campaign to oust Des Moines Public Schools board chair Dick Murphy and members Connie Boesen and Teree Caldwell-Johnson, partially in response to these lawsuits and the surrounding controversy.[14]

During a candidate forum, other issues such as class sizes and the number of counselors available to district students with mental illnesses were discussed at length by the candidates.[15][16]

Key deadlines

The following dates were key deadlines for the Des Moines Public Schools election in 2013:[5]

Deadline Event
July 8, 2013 First day for filing nominating petitions
August 1, 2013 Last day to file nominating petitions
August 2, 2013 District submits petitions to Polk County Auditor’s Office
August 6, 2013 Last day to withdraw from ballot
September 10, 2013 Election day
September 13, 2013 Official canvass of the votes
September 17, 2013 Organizational meeting of the School Board

Additional elections on the ballot

This election only shared the ballot with other local school board elections. No additional measures appeared on the ballot.

See also

External links

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Suggest a link

References

  1. United States Census Bureau, "Guide to 2010 Census State and Local Geography - Iowa," accessed July 29, 2013
  2. 2.0 2.1 United States Census Bureau, "Polk County Quick Facts," accessed July 29, 2013
  3. Iowa Secretary of State, “Voter Registration Totals by County,” accessed July 29, 2013
  4. United States Census Bureau, "Frequently Asked Questions," accessed April 21, 2014
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Des Moines Public Schools, "School Board Elections," accessed July 30, 2013
  6. Mary Stegmeir, Des Moines Register, "Teachers union endorses candidates in Des Moines school board race," August 8, 2013
  7. Mary Stegmeir, Des Moines Register, "AFSCME endorses four candidates in Des Moines school board race," August 20, 2013
  8. Rob X. Barron - Des Moines School Board, "Endorsements," accessed September 9, 2013
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 IECDB Web Reporting System, "IECDB State/Local Campaign Disclosure Reports," accessed September 9, 2013
  10. Des Moines Register, "10 vie for seats on Des Moines school board," August 2, 2013
  11. Jens Manuel Krogstad, Des Moines Register, "Boesen to seek re-election," July 18, 2013
  12. 12.0 12.1 Mary Stegmeir, Des Moines Register, "ACLU wants judge to review recording from Nancy Sebring resignation meeting," April 26, 2013
  13. Kevin Cooney, KCCI News 8, "Sebring names 3 people in lawsuit against DM Schools," June 28, 2013
  14. Bounce the Board, "About," accessed July 30, 2013
  15. Mary Stegmeir, Des Moines Register, "Des Moines forum addresses schools' class size," September 4, 2013
  16. Mary Stegmeir, Des Moines Register, "School board candidates call for more counselors," August 28, 2013