Justin Pack recently announced he is running for the District 7 seat on the Elmore County Board of Education in the 2024 election.
Pack, an Eclectic resident, told 1819 News in a recent interview he hoped to be a conservative voice on the board.
"Elmore County has one of the best school systems in the River Region and I want to see it stay that way. Up until the past year, the board has acted fairly in line with what the community wants. I think there's been a lot of people that have just lost a little bit of trust in the board over the last year. If we're going to continue to hold our place as one of the best in the area, we need to make sure we're making wise decisions," Pack said.
The Alabama Legislature passed legislation in the previous session at the request of the Elmore County Board of Education to change the Elmore County Schools Superintendent from an elected position to an appointed position.
"We need a conservative voice on the board. We've seen in recent months and really the past year that there have been the superintendent issue where we've made it from elected to appointed. We've got a big property tax issue coming up where they're wanting to raise that which is not necessarily a bad idea but it's going to need the right presentation and the right people on board in order to get that passed. The school system definitely needs the money but needs a plan on how to spend it. Just trying to put a conservative voice as somebody that is in touch with the community like I am. We just need somebody that can do that," Pack said.
Pack said he also wanted to change policies related to student exam exemptions and board meeting transparency.
"One of the big things I'm hearing from parents up until the time that I decided to run was and still here today there's a student (exam) exemption where if a student misses school then it gets counted against their exemption no matter if they're sick or if it's excused or unexcused. There's a lot of parents of students that feel that's unfair for them. They want to be able to, if they're sick don't go to school sick and not get counted against their academics so that's one of the big points for the students of parents that I'm trying to do," Pack said. "Our school board meets at 4:30 p.m for their regular board meetings. If there's a special called (meeting), it's anywhere between 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the middle of the day. They livestream it, but you can't go back and watch it and so I think there's a lot of lack of transparency on a lot of things."
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