Doug Holt, a commercial banking executive with two children enrolled at Evanston Township High School, launched his campaign for the District 202 School Board Sunday afternoon at a rally in north Evanston that attracted about 50 residents.

Holt is one of eight candidates vying for four positions on the board. Two of the candidates are incumbents running for an additional four-year term on the board that manages the operations of Evanston Township High School, whose students come from Evanston and a small portion of eastern Skokie.

Without being critical of the current board, Holt suggested that its decisions could be improved by paying closer attention to the unintended consequences of its actions.

The board in recent years has been wrestling with a decision to eliminate honors-only classes in freshman Humanities and biology. Instead, the school places students in classes where ambitious students can choose to earn honors credit by successfully doing assignments at a more rigorous level.

Some parents have been critical of the move as they contend it has the potential for watering down the curriculum for students who wish to perform at a more advanced level.

Holt said that it is important for the board to engage in the kind of “risk management” that will explore unintended consequences of the arrangement.

The candidate lauded the diversity of the school’s student body that benefits all students. and he noted that the school has an obligation to prepare non-college-bound students for careers in such areas as public safety and manufacturing while providing a superior education for college-preparatory students.

He said that since announcing his candidacy he has been impressed with the extent to which Evanstonians care about their schools and with the pride they express in them.

A former member of a citizens committee that examined budget challenges of the District 65 elementary and middle schools, Holt said his emphasis as a board member at District 202 will be on “equity, excellence, and efficiency.”

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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