Denise D’Angelo and Julie Liskany defeated incumbents Anthony Caldwell and Lee Schreiner in the general election for South-Western City Schools Board of Education in Franklin County, Ohio, on Nov. 7, 2023. Two of five school board seats were up for election, and voters could choose up to two candidates.
The district had approximately 21,699 students during the 2021-2022 school year.
Two slates had each fielded two candidates. Incumbents Anthony Caldwell and Lee Schreiner ran as the Students First! slate of candidates. Caldwell was the school board president and Schreiner was the vice president. Their campaign priorities included listening to parents, taxpayers, and residents; safeguarding tax dollars with fiscally responsible leadership; and protecting the safety, security, and wellness of all students.
Denise D’Angelo and Julie Liskany ran as The Parents’ Voice slate. Their campaign priorities included increasing parental/community involvement; ensuring safer schools and learning environments; and raising student achievement.
While the election was nonpartisan, both nonpartisan and partisan organizations and officeholders endorsed the slates. Endorsements for the Students First! slate included the Franklin County, Ohio, Democratic Party, and four education associations. Endorsements for The Parents’ Voice slate included Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose (R), the Franklin County, Ohio, Republican Party, and the 1776 Project PAC. Click here to see all endorsements.
Columbus Dispatch reporters Mark Ferenchik and Bailey Gallion said the 1776 Project “has been pouring money into local school board races around the county.” The project, which endorsed The Parents’ Voice candidates D’Angelo and Liskany, is “committed to abolishing critical race theory and ‘The 1619 Project’ from the public school curriculum.” In an interview with The Columbus Dispatch, Students First! candidate Caldwell said, “he is concerned about the school board changing direction and aligning with a certain ideology.” D’Angelo and Liskany said, “We appreciate the support from 1776 who believes ALL history should be taught in the classroom and that school is for education. Liskany D’Angelo has received 0 communication from 1776. Endorsement of 1776 was not known until a post card was sent on their behalf to those in the community.”
In Ohio, school board candidates must reside and be registered to vote in the school district for at least 30 days before the election.