In meteorological terms, when one weather system clashes with another, storms crop up.
There very well may be some rough weather Tuesday morning, then when one united front meets another. Columbia County school officials - near-unanimous in their opposition to the concept of allowing the citizens to elect the school board chairman - run into the countys legislative delegation, which has generally made it clear that they believe the public demands such an opportunity.
Its unusual for local officials to have such a polarizing disagreement, but this one remains at a standstill. This newspaper proposed the idea of an elected school board chairman after voters approved a measure leading to the election of the countys Commission chairman. Weve been saying since that the School Board, whose five members still select a leader from among their ranks, should perhaps be led by a countywide elected official.
State lawmakers began exploring the concept this year, but it was the countys Republican Party that jump-started the idea with a straw poll in the August primary. Voters overwhelmingly - with 85 percent approval - support such a change.
Nonetheless, the countys school trustees remain adamantly opposed to the idea. Only maverick Lee Muns has lately warmed to the proposal; the other four school board members refuse to even entertain the suggestion of local lawmakers to at least study the prospect.
Such stubbornness should end. School board members ought to follow the advice of state Rep. Ben Harbin, who urges them to at least discuss the concept.
The forecast is pretty clear: The winds of change are blowing. In the calm before the storm, school board members should take the opportunity to be part of the dialogue, not just parties to obstruction of a new idea they dont like.
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