COVID-19 issues at center of Tuesday's Glenbrook District 225 school board election

GLENVIEW, Ill. (WLS) -- COVID-19 issues are expected to drive voters to the polls on Tuesday in several suburbs where many school board seats are on the ballot.

The handling of the pandemic and getting students back in school is still a hotly-debated topic.

Glenbrook North and South High schools students have had the option of full time in person learning since January. District 225's COVID plan included a phased in ramped up approach since last fall.

"Are there things we learned playing Monday morning quarterback that we could have done differently, yes," said Peter Glowacki-Glenbrook District 225 School Board VP. "But the decisions we made at the time based on the information we had were all prudent."

Glowacki is trying to hang on to his District 225 school board seat. He is up for re-election in a hotly contested race. The Board Vice President is one of 10 candidates running for four open spots. Like many suburban school districts, how the board has handled COVID is at the center of the election.

"We felt there wasn't enough creative thinking, there wasn't enough originality," Glenbrook School District 225 candidate Bo Herbst said.

Herbst has joined three other candidates on a slate together known as Team Glenbrook 225. They are critical of the district for not providing in-school, full-time learning sooner and not have a plan for learning loss.

"There's a number of resources in place, I encourage parents if they feel there is a loss to reach out," Glowacki said.

But the district's handling of COVID is not the only issue in play. This race has become even more heated with students and other community members holding a rally last week accusing Team Glenbrook 225 of trying to stack the board with an ultra-conservative agenda. Herbst denied it.

"We are absolutely in favor of inclusivity, we're in favor of treating people with respect and dignity, treating people by the content of their character, not how they look, their orientation or backgrounds," Herbst said.

Local elections across Cook County are gaining a lot of interest this year. According to the clerk's office, mail-in ballots and early voting numbers are up compared to the last two consolidated elections.
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