Incumbents get credit for progress in Warren schools

Warren city schools are not going to be held out any time soon as a perfect example of education in a small urban district, but it can't be denied that important progress is being made.
The district has adopted a continuous improvement plan, it is placing new accent on the need for staff development and it has launched an aggressive early literacy program.
It is within that context that we are required to view the Warren Board of Education race on the Nov. 6 ballot.
The candidates: Two incumbents are seeking re-election. They are Robert L. Faulkner Sr., 56, a former Packard Electric executive now working with the Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber of Commerce, and D. Lynn Gibson, 52, a gift shop owner and former public school and private preschool teacher.
The challenger is Nedra G. Bowen, 55, who retired after teaching 25 years in the Warren city schools and five in Lorain and Elyria schools.
Mrs. Bowen is a strong critic of how the schools are being run, and not without some justification. But she seems to us to be constitutionally incapable of assigning any blame for educational shortfalls to bad teaching.
Accountability: Over the years, The Vindicator has supported a philosophy of chain-of-command accountability in school districts, beginning with the school board, which hires the superintendent. If the superintendent demands results from administrators and principals, and principals demand results from teachers, then teachers will do everything they can to see to it that their students learn.
This is not an indictment of teachers in general, but it is a recognition of the fact that there are good teachers and there are bad teachers. It is the responsibility of the superintendent and the principals to see to it that bad teachers are made to improve or to find another line of work.
We believe the incumbent board members are more open to this line of thinking than the challenger. Based on that and on the significant improvements Warren schools are making in meeting state department of education goals, The Vindicator endorses Faulkner and Gibson for re-election.