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Reading the Tea Leaves this Election

Election analysis from 4 PE Leadership continues with Public Testimony at the Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) School Board meeting on Thursday, November 9th. Read the remarks and watch the video clip below:


Good evening, I am Rick Clayton on behalf of 4 Public Education. I don’t need to be a fortune-teller to interpret the results of this week’s election. I can read the tea leaves.

Rick Clayton standing at the podium giving testimony in front of the FCPS School Board

Chaos, transphobia, anti-CRT and lack of civility were trounced by the voters, by the parents, in favor of inclusivity, in support for teachers, and excellence, hand in hand with equity for all. This Board has stood up to crude, personal, vile attacks in order to protect our students and our public school culture for 4 years. For some of you, this will be the last time I will speak at this podium. On behalf of 4 Public Education. … I want to say thank you.

Through this storm, Fairfax has remained at the forefront of excellence in education. Of course, we still have work to do. I hope those who have been most critical of your work will be true to their word of wanting to “listen to parents”-as parents have spoken loudly and clearly.

Parents want all kinds of books in their library- they told you this on Tuesday.


Parents want all kinds of truthful history taught- they told you this on Tuesday.


Parents want trans kids protected and listened to- they told you this on Tuesday.


Parents want teachers supported-emotionally and financially- they told you this on Tuesday.


Parents want civility when we do disagree, not performative politics- they told you this on Tuesday.

Parents have sent a clear message. I hope everyone, now, will listen to them and, ….as one school board candidate said in another county “Make school board meetings boring again.”

I, and the rest of our group 4 Public Education, look forward to working with the new Board next year.


View the video testimony here:




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