Sunday, January 06, 2008

Besides that Pesky Presidential Primary. . .

Montgomery County voters can cast ballots in congressional and school board primaries on February 12th. Even independents can vote in the school board races. Despite holding her campaign kickoff just before the Redskins game, Alies Muskin attracted a good crowd to her campaign kickoff on Saturday for the seat being vacated by Sharon Cox.

The Washington Post reports:

All three seats are up for election next year. Because the contests are nonpartisan, the top two vote-getters for each seat in the February primary advance to the general election in November. . . .

Muskin faces four opponents, including Philip Kauffman, a government lawyer from Silver Spring who collected the endorsement of The Washington Post -- but not of the teachers association -- in a failed bid to unseat Navarro last year. Also running: Tommy Le, an engineer and former teacher who was defeated last year by Shirley Brandman (At Large); Carey Apple, an aquatic-facility supervisor from Germantown; and Rob Seubert, a loan officer and former middle school science teacher from Silver Spring.

Active in PTAs since 1992, Muskin is a longtime advocate of Albert Einstein High School and its feeder schools as well as the Downcounty Consortium of schools. She was instrumental in building the annual college fair at Einstein into one of the largest such events in the region.
I hadn't met Alies Muskin before the event and had a chance to talk with her for a few minutes. When I asked why she was running, she said her big passion was making sure that the system works for all students and expressed concern about the rapidly rising share of low-performing students in high schools. In her remarks to the crowd, she also expressed concern about addressing the needs of students with anxiety disorders and other mental illnesses.

Besides MCEA, Muskin has been endorsed by SEIU Local 500 which represents school staff and the MCPS Student Government PAC.