Advocating for openness

Published 8:47 am Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Last January, when the Franklin City Council decided to interview three candidates for the city school board’s at-large seat in open session, we called it “a victory for openness.”

“This City Council, unlike its predecessors, understands the folly of shielding citizens from their own business,” we opined then. “Time after time in recent months, the council has opted for openness over secrecy, and it’s no coincidence that citizens are slowly regaining their trust in city government.”

It’s too bad that since discovering the bungling of the 2-2-3 school board expiration pattern, causing five seats to come open at the same time, the City Council has again retreated to interviewing candidates behind closed doors.

While we applaud the council’s move to reopen the nominations and strive toward consensus on the appointees, we remain disappointed that the public will again be shielded from learning the candidates’ qualifications and philosophies on education.

As far as board appointments go, it can be strongly argued that none are as important as those who govern our schools and look out for the welfare of our children.

The City Council will hold closed interviews for the four new nominees on Monday at 6 p.m. at City Hall.

In the meantime, The Tidewater News is committed to bringing its readers every bit of information we can on the newest candidates.