In the Bettendorf school board race, a bitter campaign has been orchestrated against me, full of unfair attacks and false accusations that we’ve come to expect in partisan politics, but that should be unwelcome in school board elections. I feel it’s necessary to set the record straight.

As a school board director, my decisions have been guided by one thing: doing what is right for the district as a whole. Inevitably, some people with a narrow self-interest disagree with some decisions I’ve made. Some of those people are running a smear campaign against me to try to elect candidates who will do their bidding.

I’ve been criticized for supporting Maxine McEnany’s candidacy yet many of my critics support a slate of three candidates that would effectively represent a wholesale takeover of the board. I support Maxine because the district will benefit from her financial expertise, high moral character and independence.

The school district belongs to the community. Residents exercise their authority by voting for school board members who will hold the administration accountable for achieving results. Too often in the past, the board has acted as a rubber stamp for the administration. Still, I have voted with the majority on the board more than 90 percent of the time, hardly the thorn in the administration’s side that I’m made out to be.

Despite the negative campaign waged against me by a small number of vocal critics, I'm grateful for the support I’ve received from the wider community. If you value civility, diversity of opinion and an independent school board that will hold administration accountable for achieving results, please support me by exercising your right to vote.

Pepper Trahan