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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Candidates on the issues: Melissa Bedford and Daryl Geffken

  • Do you agree with the mask mandate for children in schools?

    • Daryl Geffken We need to prioritize keeping students in class full time. If that requires a mask, then so be it. Our students cannot go back to remote learning.
    • Melissa Bedford Yes. I believe we need to do our part in protecting our most vulnerable populations and right now that includes children 12 and under who are unable to get vaccinated.
  • Do you believe critical race theory is currently being taught in schools?

    • Daryl Geffken It’s not hard for community members to believe that the tenets of critical race theory inform the policies and priorities of the district.
    • Melissa Bedford No, critical race theory is not being taught in our schools because it is not a curriculum.
  • What’s your stance on the state’s comprehensive sex education program?

    • Daryl Geffken It is something we should teach as it relates to health. That said, the topic is also very intimate and can have such a level of morality that we need to give parent choice the priority.
    • Melissa Bedford I support the state’s comprehensive sex education program because it is medically accurate and developmentally appropriate.
  • Should schools have armed security personnel in buildings?

    • Daryl Geffken Yes. Keeping our students safe and allowing professionals to quickly respond and triage a situation is critical. Our safety professionals need continued support to perform their duties when we need them most.
    • Melissa Bedford No, schools should not have armed security personnel in buildings.
  • What does equity in schools mean to you?

    • Daryl Geffken Equity is the goal of meeting people where they are and endeavoring to empower them to become the best version of themselves. It’s built on the belief that each person has value, and it’s our privilege and responsibility to understand that value.
    • Melissa Bedford It means ensuring all students have access and opportunities within the education system according to their needs. It means providing students with the necessary resources for them to each reach their personal and professional goals.
  • Do you believe all board members should be allowed to speak to the media, instead of just the board president?

    • Daryl Geffken There are no restrictions at a Council, State, or Federal level on elected officials being able to speak to the media. I believe all School Board members have the right to speak.
    • Melissa Bedford I believe board members should collaborate and communicate, while also affording individual board members the opportunity to share their thoughts with the media.