By Eileen Washburn
Dear Members of the Loveland City School District Community,
I write to you today as an individual member of the Loveland City School District School Board to share my deep concerns about the recent appointment process to fill a vacant school board seat. While I represent just one voice among our board members, it is vital for me to articulate my perspective on this issue as it pertains to the core principles of fairness, impartiality, and the integrity of the democratic processes that underlie our educational institution. (Hamilton County Probate Judge Ralph Winkler appoints Linda Cecil to vacant School Board seat)
The situation at hand stemmed from the school board’s appointment of Dr. Brad Goldie to the vacant school board seat. Unfortunately, due to an unforeseen glitch in the process, Mr. Goldie was unable to assume the position, and by state law, the seat appointment was redirected to probate court. I want to emphasize that Mr. Goldie is eminently qualified, having dedicated countless hours to improving the financial health of our district. Furthermore, he is not a candidate in the upcoming November election, distinguishing him from other applicants.
Recognizing the significance of this matter, our School Board took the proactive step of sending a detailed letter to Hamilton County Probate Judge Ralph Winkler, outlining the background, circumstances, and our earnest intent in making this appointment. Regrettably, it appears that our intent, as representatives elected by district voters, was not taken into consideration by Judge Winkler.
It is crucial that the appointment of a school board member be conducted in a manner that prioritizes qualifications, experience, and a steadfast dedication to our students and their families. As stewards of our educational system, the decisions we make have a profound impact on the educational experiences of our children. Thus, our foremost duty is to ensure that these decisions are guided by the best interests of our students.
One of the fundamental tenets that govern our actions is impartiality, particularly during an election season, to safeguard our board from undue political influences. This commitment to impartiality is vital to maintaining the integrity of our educational institution.
In response to concerns, Judge Winkler has conveyed in email correspondence that he made the best decision possible under the constraints of the law. However, it is worth noting that he did not engage in conversations with the applicants, their references, or any current board members, raising questions about the comprehensiveness of the decision-making process.
As individual school board members, we take immense pride in serving in non-partisan positions and remain dedicated to focusing exclusively on the educational needs of our students, free from political biases or external influences.
I want to assure our community that my commitment to delivering an exceptional education to our students remains unwavering. I will continue to work tirelessly to uphold the values that have made our school district a source of pride for our community.
Loveland City School District Individual School Board Member