The ballot for the Erie School District 2023 November general election has eight candidates looking to occupy positions.

One candidate who is running for school board director of the Erie School District believes the school board races are just as critical as other races.

“Public education, I believe, is a right and not just being able to walk into a school and say oh, I got school but an equitable education. I mean these kids are going to be the people that will someday be the judges, that will someday be county council people,” said Angie Amatangelo, a candidate from the Erie School District.

Amatangelo said she was able to witness what kids experience in the Erie School District through her daughter and friends and wants to help contribute to the youth of Erie.

“One of the things they said they felt like overall they didn’t really feel like anybody cared about them and I don’t want any kids to feel that way,” said Amatangelo.

Another candidate who’s on the ballot is the current board president for the Iroquois School District and is up for reelection.

He said each person on the ballot would play a significant role if elected as each district is different than the other.

He said there are decisions made in Harrisburg that act as “blanket” for all districts.

“There’s not a solution that works for all schools because we’re all so different. Even though we are so close to each other, the demographics and the different situations that each district has, even within IU5, is amazing and would probably shock a lot of people,” said Jeremy Coblentz, a candidate from the Iroquois School District.

Coblentz highlighted an issue with school board races that needs to be improved across the commonwealth – a platform for candidates to get their voices into the community and inform the public on who they are and why they are running.

“It’s so hard to get that information. And even for small community and school members right now, it is hard to find information on school board members. If you just go and look at the ballot you basically have to do a Google search or ask people in your community, ‘hey, do you know this person?'” said Coblentz.

Amatangelo added that school board races are essential as education is the key to everything, even beyond high school.