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Wake County school board member John Tedesco on resigning early to take a higher elected office

John Tedesco defended today his decision to run for state schools superintendent and potentially leave his Wake County school board seat early.

In today's edition of the Called2Action radio show, conservative talk show host Steve Noble and guest Steve Henion asked whether it's appropriate for elected officials to run for higher office and leave their terms early. Since Tedesco was one of the examples highlighted, he called in to explain his decision to run for superintendent.

Tedesco said he felt he could do more to serve children as superintendent than he could on the school board, especially now that he's in the minority. Tedesco said he'd work to find a school board replacement to run next year if he become superintendent or to run for reelection if he loses this year.

1352322338 Wake County school board member John Tedesco on resigning early to take a higher elected office The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

NC HEAT attacks conservatives and neighborhood schools

The quick summary of the message from Thursday night's meeting is that neighborhood schools and political conservatism are bad.

As noted in today's article, the teens of N.C. HEAT argued that neighborhood schools will lead to resegregation and that the Wake County school board majority is controlled by conservative groups. The teens didn't have nice words to say about Steve Noble, chairman of Called2Action, and conservative businessmen Art Pope and Bob Luddy.

Enloe High student Robert Wright said the school board's policy is being set by Called2Action and Pope. He said members of the board majority are "puppets used by conservative organizations."

Seeking the high moral ground in the Wake school diversity fight

Can either side claim the high moral ground in the Wake County school diversity fight?

As noted in today's article, the various Christian leaders allying with the state NAACP to restore the old diversity policy are arguing they're on the side of good. Terms like evil and Jim Crow were bandied about at Tuesday's press conference on the July 20 mass march.

“We're here today to fight against something that is extremely evil,” said the Rev. John Mendez on behalf of the General Baptist State Convention of N.C., whose 400,000 members represent the largest black denomination in the state. “We would not be here today if evil was not pervasive. But there is something evil because it is divisive.”

Churches around state backing NAACP in fight against Wake school board

The state NAACP is lining up more non-Evangelical Christian groups to oppose the Wake County school board majority's elimination of the socioeconomic diversity policy.

As noted in today's Durham News religion column by Flo Johnston, a group calling itself the  Concerned Clergy of Durham plans to release a statement Friday in opposition to the changes being planned in Wake County. They're following up on the actions of the Wake County Clergy Coalition.

“We need to be more active, not sitting around twiddling our thumbs while the potential for re-segregation is coming into play again," said the Rev. Marilyn Hedgpeth, an associate pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Durham. "I hope we have learned from our past not to go there again."

CORRECTION

Changed to show that Barber's denomination is part of the Disciples of Christ International. Link also changed for denomination website.

Debating the change to high school U.S. history

This is admittedly more of a state issue, but the ramifications are obvious for Wake County.

As noted in today's article by Lynn Bonner, the state Department of Public Instruction is considering a new social studies curriculum in which U.S. history in 11th-grade would only cover 1877 to the present. Currently, it covers 1789 to the present.

State education officials have been under siege since Fox News reported on the change on Wednesday. People have been in an uproar over the exclusion of the Founding Fathers and the Civil War from the class.

SEE UPDATE AT END OF POST ON DPI PRESS RELEASE

Bob Luddy directing the new school board majority?

Is conservative businessman Bob Luddy pulling the string behind the new Wake County school board majority?

That's a possibility raised in a Wednesday column by Chris Fitzsimon, executive director of the liberal N.C. Policy Watch. Fitzsimon, who's no fan of the new board, notes that Luddy gave a lot of money to the new members.

"Though Tuesday’s meeting was not nearly as carefully orchestrated as the one two weeks ago, it’s still hard to believe the new board is operating on its own," Fitzsimon writes. "It’s far more likely they’re getting help, if not direction from folks like businessman and Locke Foundation board member Bob Luddy, who was the largest individual campaign contributor to the new board members."

WCTA urges supporters to attend Tuesday's school board meeting

The Wake County Taxpayers Association is joining the efforts to rally supporters of the new Wake County school board majority to attend Tuesday's board meeting.

In a e-mail message sent Saturday, WCTA President Russell Capps tells the group's members "we need to attend the next School board meeting in large numbers for a show of support for our new School Board Members."

The WCTA references the rally being organized by the conservative N.C. Americans for Prosperity. It's fair to guess that both groups share some of the same members.

Called2Action rallying behind new school board

Called2Action is answering the call to stand behind the new Wake County school board majority.

In an ActionGram sent Thursday, Called2Action leader Steve Noble says the conservative Christian group's members need to support the new school board. He's urging people to pray for the school board, especially chairman Ron Margiotta, and to attend the Tuesday rally being organized by N.C. Americans for Prosperity.

Margiotta is a member of Called2Action.

Questioning the bipartisanship of the critics

Pretty much everyone can agree that this year's school board elections offer critics one of their best chances in recent memory to make major gains.

But as noted in today's article, there's dispute over just where critics are coming from. Is it, as claimed by Wake Democratic Party Chairman Jack Nichols, a campaign being orchestrated by the Republicans to seize control of the school board?

"Other than the Wake Republican Party, are there other groups who have endorsed those candidates?" Nichols said. "No one."

Called2Action announces Wake school board endorsements

Called2Action, a conservative Christian group, has announced its school board candidate endorsements.

The group says it's backing Chris Malone in District 1, John Tedesco in District 2, Deborah Prickett in District 7 and Debra Goldman in District 9. But will Called2Action's support scare off some voters as liberal groups will likely try to take shots at the endorsements?

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