Organizers behind an effort to recall three conservative Jefferson County school board members turned in 37,000 petition signatures on Tuesday. That's twice as many as required to force a recall election this November.
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A crowd of about 100 people gathered outside the Jefferson County Clerk's Office to cheer when organizers proclaimed they had far more signatures than needed. They want to oust conservative board members John Newkirk, Julie Williams, and board President Ken Witt.
The board has been embroiled in several controversies, including a proposal to write patriotism standards into a U.S. history course that was eventually dropped after student protests that made national headlines.
Ashlyn Maher, who recently graduated from Chatfield High School, helped lead those efforts. She says, “What these walk-outs showed students was that they have a voice and if something is wrong they can use that voice.”
The three targeted school board members have said they take pride in their work to improve the district. One called the recall a political matter not an educational one. The signatures still must be verified.