By editorial board • 

Gibson deserves to return to Mac school board seat

Next month, we will witness the most contested election for local school board positions in recent memory. Both McMinnville and Newberg districts have three contested races, while Yamhill-Carlton has two. 

The News-Register editorial board will be making endorsements in the Mac races. We are kicking off our endorsements today with position six, in which we have no doubt that returning Dr. Scott Gibson would be the right choice for voters. 

Gibson has practiced as a local physician since 1989. He’s also a landscape photographer. His opponent is Norma Swanborough, a retired secretary who has lived around the country and worked locally in the county’s mental health department.

Swanborough is a very pleasant person to speak with, and comes with some experience — she once served on the school board in the tiny Southwest Washington district of Hockinson. But we have a decided preference for the incumbent here.  

Gibson joined the McMinnville School Board in 2011. He admittedly knew little about the inner workings of education when he was elected, but his innate curiosity and aptitude allowed him to catch on quickly.

We also know Gibson as a frequent contributor to our Viewpoints section. And while you may not always agree with his opinion, there is no denying his thoughtfulness and respect for other viewpoints.

He’s a self-described enthusiast by nature, and an optimistic one at that.

That level of curiosity drove Gibson to visit classrooms as often as possible during his first term. Seeing firsthand the myriad ways students learn and teachers teach led him to create his own educational mantra — high expectations backed with high levels of support.

If elected, we are confident he will continue to advocate for the highest possible levels of support for our teachers, administrators and classified support personnel, in the ultimate interests of our students. 

There are several major issues the school board is facing right now, including implementation of the Common Core initiative, introduction of Smarter Balance testing, a struggle over state funding and an upcoming bond issue that could decide the structural makeup of the district for decades to come — one that could include funding for a new high school, either replacing or augmenting the existing 60-year-old facility, built as a middle school.

On all these major issues, we are confident Gibson will have a positive influence on the outcome.

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