• Gary Woronchak

Deadline July 21 for school board candidates

With the pandemic undoubtedly overlapping into 2021, keeping our children’s education moving forward – safely -- will be one of the most important issues we face as a community.


As if that in itself isn’t overwhelming enough, Dearborn Public Schools will surely face financial issues for general operations due to COVID-19, not to mention the still-unresolved building maintenance needs that are going unaddressed after voters turned down a bond proposal last fall.


Our school board trustees are tasked with deciding how these historic challenges will be met. Which makes the school board seats on the November 3 ballot perhaps the most consequential election for Dearborn residents this year, presidential contest notwithstanding.

Deadline for school board candidates to file the paperwork necessary to be on the November ballot is Tuesday, July 21 at 4:00 p.m. The documents must be filed with Dearborn City Clerk George Darany’s office at the Dearborn Administrative Center, 16901 Michigan Avenue. Candidates file with the Dearborn clerk even though part of the school district is in the northeast section of Dearborn Heights.

Four seats on the seven-member school board are expiring this year. Three of the seats will be for full terms of six years, from January 2021 until December 2026. A separate election on the November 3 ballot will be held for a partial term that will run for two years, through 2022. Candidates will have to declare whether they are running for the full terms or the partial term. The top vote-getter in the partial term race will win the two-year seat. The top three in the full term race will be elected.

Current school board members whose terms are expiring include Mary Petlichkoff, Mary Lane, Adel Mozip and J. Michael Meade. It has been suggested that one or two of the current trustees will not run for re-election, but such speculation is not unusual and nothing is certain until the filing deadline next Tuesday. Even then, candidates have a few more days if they decide to withdraw from the ballot, with the withdrawal deadline Friday, July 24 at 4:00 p.m.

Our school board members serve as both the P-12 board for Dearborn Public Schools and the Board of Trustees for Henry Ford College, with a separate meeting for each entity every month. The compensation is just under $10,000 per year. The work isn’t easy and the responsibilities are significant.

Interested in becoming a candidate? Click here to go to the page on the school district’s website that has a full explanation and links to all necessary forms.

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