[VIDEO] District 65 school board candidates were asked today what price they’re willing to pay for diversity in Evanston’s schools.

The question, posed at a candidate forum at the Civic Center hosted by the Evanston NAACP, was raised in the context of the busing program that for decades has sent students who live near the now closed and formerly nearly all-black Foster School to schools in other parts of the city to achieve racial balance.

Candidates generally said they value student achievement more highly than diversity, but they differed on whether the answer is to build a new school on the city’s west side, or come up with a new way of drawing attendance boundaries that would allow students to attend schools near their homes.

Four of the five candidates will be elected to four year terms on the seven-member school board. Early voting starts Monday, with the general election on April 7.

Video courtesy Evanston Community Media Center.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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