Ethan Bakuli
Chalkbeat reporter Ethan Bakuli spoke to BridgeDetroit about the importance of the upcoming school board races in Detroit. COVID-19 relief dollars, chronic absenteeism, and kids reading below grade-level are among the challenges facing the city’s public school district. (Photo by Briana Rice)

City voters will decide four seats on the school board next week as Detroit’s public school district grapples with chronic absenteeism, poor academic achievement and the continued fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

There are 18 candidates, including incumbents and former school board members, district parents and alumni, on the Nov. 8 ballot vying to represent the Detroit Public Schools Community District. 

Chalkbeat Detroit held a recent candidate forum and reporter Ethan Bakuli created a voter guide to help Detroiters understand who is running for seats on the seven-member school board charged with approving policies and contracts for the 49,000-student district, and how the candidates view this moment in the district’s history. 

Check out Bakuli’s overview on the school board races and what voters should be paying attention to as they head to the polls or cast absentee ballots.

Bryce Huffman is a reporter for BridgeDetroit. He was formerly a reporter for Michigan Radio, and host of the podcast, Same Same Different.

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