Sue Peters is an experienced journalist and parent leader who is running for Seattle school board. I have blogged about Sue because I have met her and I know how committed She is to strengthening the public schools of Seattle and standing up to the powerful corporate raiders.

These corporate forces, the ones who wield great power in Seattle, do not want her elected to the school board. They fear her brave and honest voice.

That is why I sent a personal contribution to her campaign.

That is why she was endorsed by the Network for Public Education. That is why I hope you will send her whatever you can afford to help her.

She was vastly outspent in the primary, but managed to get into a run-off with her main opponent.her opponent has a PAC that has run attack ads against Sue.

The Seattle Times, which genuflects to Bill Gates, has snidely put Sue down as a mere “parent activist.”

Sue is one of us, fighting our fight. Please go to her website and donate $5, $10, $20, $50, whatever you can.

Let’s take back our schools. You can help.

This is a letter from Melissa Westbrook, who was one of the leaders of the fight against the charter referendum funded last fall by Gates, the Bezos family, and the Walton family, billionaires all. It win by 1%.

Melissa writes:

“I wanted to send you a link to the Seattle Times (our only daily newspaper) that was an editorial wrap-up of the primary for School Board.

They seem to want to omit and/or denigrate Sue’s credentials but really what I wanted you to see was this about parent activists:

“Peters may give Dale Estey a run for her money. But the effort would have to begin with Peters broadening beyond the “education activist” description. Here’s why: Any parent volunteering in the classrooms, on field trips, attending school board meetings, raising money for education or in myriad other ways working to improve their local schools is an activist. So is Peters merely one of them? Or is the “activist” moniker code for membership in a small cabal of district critics who have not changed their reflexive oppositional stances since the early 1990s? Conversations leading up to the November general election should provide answers.”

Melissa continues:

“Here’s what I wrote at my blog, Seattle Schools Community Forum:

” Varner [the editorial writer who cheer leads for Gates-style reform] gets to define what an activist is? Broadly – and I mean very broadly speaking – she’s right. An “active” parent could be called an activist. Except that it usually means going beyond your own school. She knows that (or she should).

“Then she talks about “code” which is ironic given the use of ed reform code words she uses in her columns all the time.

“So there is a small “cabal” of district critics? Well, there’s an even larger -but much more selective and closed-off – cabal of ed reformers. And no one need apply because they only let the “right” people in. (I also have to laugh at Varner saying Peters may give Estey a “run for her money.” Money is right, given how much more Estey has and who she gets it from.)

That reference at the end is about a PAC – set up by two wealthy men in Seattle just for Dale Estey’s campaign. They are the ones sending the false flyers that you have written about.

I know that Varner’s words are to strike out at our blog because we command a larger readership and challenge ed reform every step of the way. By putting us down/marginalizing us, they hope to do the same to Sue.

I wanted you to know that these tactics are being used. The good news is that Seattle is a VERY independent-minded city and people here ask a lot of questions. The Times won’t be able to just say anything and have it received in silence.

Best wishes,
Melissa Westbrook
Seattle Schools Community Forum blog