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Four candidates are on the ballot for the Warren Township School Board

Three of the seven seats on the board are up for election in the Warren Township Metropolitan School District, east of Marion County. Last year, about 11,600 students were enrolled in the 15 schools in the district.

This year, Warren had the lowest rate of students passing both the math and English sections of the ILEARN Review for all county school districts. Only 8% of students mastered both subjects – a decrease of 14 percentage points from before the pandemic in 2019.

The district has budgeted more than $22 million to respond to student education. That’s about half of the total federal funds the district received for pandemic aid. Warren uses part of the one-time funds to pay for interventionists to help students overcome challenges in reading and math. So far, the district has been reimbursed for spending approximately $11 million on tuition fees, depending on the state.

Warren’s students are approximately 55% black, 19% white, and 17% Hispanic. Nearly 63% of students are in families whose income qualifies them for free or reduced meals.

This election

This November, three of the candidates are holders and one is a challenger. The seven council members are all elected at large and serve overlapping terms of four years each.

Who votes and how to vote

All electors who live within the boundaries of the school district can vote for all general candidates. The first three voters will be elected to the school board.

Voter registration closes October 11. Marion County residents can register to vote at indianavoters.in.gov.

Early voting begins Oct. 12 at the Indianapolis City-County Building at 200 E. Market St. Other early voting sites, including one in Pike Township at the Pike Library branch of the Indianapolis Public Library, open October 29 and can be found online at https://vote.indy.gov/early-voting/.

On Election Day Nov. 8, residents of Marion County can vote at any polling center in the county, which is within https://vote.indy.gov/.

Meet the at-large candidates

(Left to right) Warren Township school board candidates Dennis Orellana, Rachel Burke, Kevin Humphrey and Terri Amos.

Terri L.Amos

Amos is seeking his third term on the Warren Township School Board. She is a teacher and her children attend schools in the district. Amos wants to address state and federal funding policies that create challenges for the district, such as staffing shortages and inequitable access to opportunities among students. Amos is a member of the Indiana School Board Association.

Rachel Burk

Burke is an incumbent and has served two non-consecutive terms on the board. She is president of the Indiana Parent Teacher Association. All three of Burke’s children are graduates or attend Warren schools. She wants to prioritize equity in education in terms of meeting the needs of all students, especially those who have fallen behind during the pandemic.

Kevin Humphrey

Humphrey is the only non-incumbent candidate for a seat on the board. He works as a postman and has teaching experience. He coaches youth football and has enrolled three children in schools in Warren Township. It intends to give priority to the quality of education and the safety of students.

Denis Orellana

Orellana has been on the board for a year. He said it was important to focus on connecting with Latinx parents and students to understand their needs and support them in their language. Its goal is to prioritize student safety and education.

Contact Sydney Dauphinais, WFYI Economic Equity Reporter, at [email protected]. Follow on Twitter: @syddauphinais.

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