At least one Columbia County school board member may have some competition in the upcoming general election.
Martinez resident Donnie Porter said he is a considering a run for the District 2 seat currently held by Wayne Bridges.
"I'm just frustrated with our current school board," he said. "They underestimated the will of the people with the countywide elected school board chairman. Now I think they are ignoring the will of the people by not expanding the foreign language program," said Porter.
Bridges, who served as chairman of the board last year, said he has not decided if he will run.
"I'm praying about it," he said.
School board trustees Roxanne Whitaker, who is completing her second term, and Lee Muns, who is completing his first term, also are up for re-election this year. Both also said they are undecided if they will run for re-election, and so far no potential challengers for their seats have come forward.
School board elections, which are nonpartisan, typically are politically lackluster. However, some of Bridges' constituents - many of them who are, like Porter, Stevens Creek Elementary School parents - have complained that Bridges ignored their wishes by not fully supporting the implementation of a countywide elementary foreign-language program. .
Porter said he has seen how Stevens Creek's Spanish program, which is partially funded by the state, has been beneficial to them and wants to expand it to all the schools in the county.
"I just see it as a big positive," he said. "If we are truly going to put out world-class students, we've got to have a world-class curriculum," he said.
Name: Donnie Porter
Occupation: He is guidance coordinator and statistical analyst for the Guidance, Testing and Research Department of the Richmond County Board of Education.
Education: Currently seeking his master's degree in public administration at Augusta State University.
Family: He and his wife Susan have three children Nicklaus, 8, and Hogan, 6, and Sarazen Elizabeth, 3.
Quote: "It's easy to sit back and say that's wrong, wrong, wrong. I want to make it happen. I want to be a part of it."
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