The issue: Hernando County School Board District 2 race.
Our opinion: Matthew Foreman deserves full term to continue work to improve school district.
Lately issues involving the District 2 school board seat have been anything but run of the mill.
In September 2011, then-Gov. Charlie Crist handpicked Matthew Foreman, a local attorney, to serve out the remainder of the term of Pat Fagan, who resigned earlier that year.
The selection came months after the school board first requested the governor choose a replacement. Foreman's selection came as a surprise to many as he was one of the last candidates to request the appointment.
Then last month came the news that Supervisor of Elections Annie Williams's office gave the wrong information to Foreman and William Kingeter about when their election would occur. Williams office told both candidates the election would be on Nov. 6 when in actuality state voting laws require the election take place during the Aug. 14 primary.
While Foreman, 29, was smart to check and confirm with outside sources on when the election would occur and started campaigning, Kingeter did not find out until late July when a radio talk show host told him his election was indeed in August and not November.
Since then both candidates have put their best foot forward to woo voters in the upcoming election.
Kingeter, 74, who made an unsuccessful run in 2010 for county commission, is a retired deputy fire chief from Newark, N.J., who, like Foreman, applied for the open school board seat in 2011.
Kingeter's platform includes taking a stand against bullying, finding ways to provide teachers with more supplies and fixing what he sees as rampant cases of nepotism and cronyism currently taking place in the school system.
He cites his own experience three years ago when he tried to apply for various jobs with the district.
"I was told that I had to have a hook to get in," Kingeter said in a recent interview.
While Kingeter does make some valid points, ideas such as having principals report directly to the school board about bullying investigations might be a little overboard and better left for principals to handle at the school level.
He also lacks experience when it comes to the school district and its inner workings, which certainly hinders his campaign.
Foreman, on the other hand, is a product of the school system, who attended Springstead and went to college only to return to work and live in the community he grew up in.
There's no question about his passion for and knowledge of the school district.
During his short time on the board, Foreman has shown to be a vocal board member who isn't afraid to express his opinion, even if it's in the minority.
Foreman favors giving the superintendent the freedom he needs to do his job without micromanaging, which we could not agree with more.
We also agree with Foreman that when it comes time to select a new superintendent the board should consider the best overall candidate no matter where that person happens to live.
Although Foreman was evasive answering some questions concerning his opinion on cost-saving measure like eliminating sports or freezing teacher pay — citing collective bargaining discussions — he still has built a strong body of work given his short time on the board.
Hernando Today recommends voters cast their ballots for Foreman.