This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
The process for electing members of the Utah State Board of Education is extremely flawed and needs to be changed.
This year, the committee (appointed by the governor and accountable to no one) that now recruits and recommends candidates to the governor eliminated two incumbents and came close to eliminating District 7's Leslie Castle.
Because of a three-way tie for second place, Castle's name was passed on to the governor, and he put her name on the ballot.
Her opponent, Carlton Getz, was the committee's first choice, but when the people voted, incumbent Castle received 78.8 percent of the vote. Castle is a dedicated public servant who has and will continue to work tirelessly to improve our public schools.
Why is there a fear that the voters cannot be trusted to select state school board members? Or is the current system designed to systematically eliminate board members who don't have the "right" education philosophy.
So far, this nomination and election system has eliminated five incumbents who were popularly elected by their constituents by sizable margins.
Gov. Gary Herbert needs to lead the push for legislation that will give the choice back to the people.