The terms of five Cleveland Metropolitan School District Board members will expire at the end of June. And that means it’s time for Mayor Justin Bibb to reappoint them or replace them.
The Ohio legislature passed a law to reorganize the Cleveland schools in 1997. Since then, the nine city school board members have been chosen by the Cleveland mayor, putting Cleveland’s school system ultimately under mayoral control.
Justin Bibb is the fourth mayor (after Michael R. White, Jane Campbell and Frank Jackson) to have this power. He will make the final decisions on the five vacancies.
With more than half of the board positions open, this round of appointments could significantly influence the future of the district. The new board will also be guiding a new CEO.
But the mayor cannot appoint just anyone to a board position. State law requires that the mayor choose from a list of candidates selected by a local nominating panel. The list must contain at least twice the number of vacancies, and two of the candidates must reside in non-Cleveland parts of the school district.
Usually the candidates are nominated, selected and appointed outside of public view.
For the sake of transparency, Signal Cleveland asked for the list of candidates the nominating panel presented to Bibb this week as well as their applications. We used that information to create the slides below. Swipe through to learn about the 12 candidates, four of whom are current board members up for reappointment.