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Wake School Board members Endorse Erv

Wake school board members join a majority of Wake mayors and County commissioners to back Erv in this election.


grandkids-on-a-walkEach generation has the responsibility to educate the next. Our parents and grandparents did it for us and now it’s our turn to do our part.

I know this to be true and I know we can do a better job in this important work.
As we grow we need to do a better job of building new schools before the current ones get so overcrowded that we have to cap enrollment. We need to respect the design of the school, so we don’t make our kids eat lunch when its not lunchtime. We need to build schools with room to grow, not overcrowded the day they open. Our job is to create optimal learning environments so students can thrive. We need to find new and creative ways to do this important work.

Cooperation and Transparency

To do this we have to work together, for far too long our school board and county board has been at odds with each other. Recently our boards have made progress in better cooperation, this is good, but there is more to do.

As we grow we need to honor our commitment to taxpayers to provide the services they are paying for. New residents pay taxes and expect there to be a seat for their children in our schools.

iStock_000035232358_XXXLarge-WEBWe will spend billions in school construction over the next few years, we need to be sure we are getting good value for the money we spend. That’s why I support improved transparency reporting so citizens can see our cost per student and per square foot for each and every school, and compare it to the costs in other areas of the country. With this transparency citizens can be confident we are managing their money well and getting good value for their hard earned tax dollars.

A multiyear rolling plan

I support a 5-8 year rolling plan that will match enrollment growth with capacity. No plan will ever be perfect, but it should reflect our best judgement from both the schoolboard and the county board, on that there should be no disagreement.

Then we need to stage the plan, the first 2 years are in construction, the next 2 years in land acquisition and the latter years are for planning debt and financing capacity. By doing this we can review it each year, update it with new information, fine tune the details and extend it another year. That’s what our citizens expect from us.

In North Carolina we stand out from the rest of the nation. Here only the County Commissioners are responsible for constructing schools, it is the majority of our tax revenue and our largest financial responsibility. Good planning, cooperation and a shared vision are key to any good long range plan.

Broad based community support

I am encouraged by the broad based community support I have received in this race. A majority of Wake county mayors, republican, democrat and independents have come forward to back my candidacy. Most of the current county board has endorsed by race, and today a strong majority of the Wake county school board stands with me to support my race to serve all of Wake citizens on the county board. These are the leaders that Wake voters have trusted to represent them in local offices. They know how important the job of a county board commissioner is to their success, and that is why I am so encouraged by their support.

Wake County School Board members supporting Erv for County Board,

  • Tom Benton, Chair
  • Monika Johnson-Hostler, Vice-chair
  • Kevin L. Hill 
  • Keith Sutton 
  • Jim Martin
  • Christine Kushner
  • Zora Felton
  • Susan P. Evans

Here are some thoughts on why these commissioners and school board members have come forward to support me.

Tom Benton – Chair Wake School Board,  “Erv has always been a supporter of strong public schools in Wake County. He has expressed some innovative ideas about funding that are worth examining.”

Jim Martin – Wake County Board of Education, District 5, –  “I have known Erv Portman for more than 15 years as a wise business leader, an effective public servant and a friend.   He both values and understands the diverse communities of Wake County.  I know that as a County Commissioner he will be a great partner as we work to advance public education in our county.”

Endorsements show respect, and confidence.  They trust I understand the issues, will do my homework, share my thoughts clearly and listen to others and only after this, then make the best decisions possible.

But in the end the most important endorsements come from the citizens of Wake County.

I hope you will check out my website and learn about the issues and my thoughts and share yours.  I hope to earn the most important endorsement any candidate can win, your vote in this election.