The Albemarle County School Board appointed Rebecca Berlin to its White Hall District seat.
The seat was left vacant when David Oberg announced in October that he would resign from the board, citing personal circumstances. Berlin’s term will start Jan. 1, 2023, and last until November. She would have the option to run for the seat in November.
The board named Berlin after a brief public hearing in which one member of the community spoke, advocating that Oberg’s replacement have a child who attends or graduated from county schools and supports the division’s anti-racism policy.
During a Dec. 1 special meeting, Berlin, a former special education teacher with one child in Albemarle County schools, said she would like to join the school board because she understands the pressures on students and teachers.
“The pandemic has taught us so much,” Berlin said. Differences in test scores for disadvantaged students “got even worse after the pandemic.”
Berlin said she backed the county schools’ strategic plan, but was worried the board had set goals that it couldn’t achieve.
“Those are goals each of our children deserve … however, where we are, compared to where we need to go, gives me pause. That’s what brought me to put my name in,” Berlin said.
Berlin was “amazed” by the county division’s anti-racism policy, especially the fact that it was driven by students.
“It sets an example for the state and the country,” Berlin said, but she worried it might become less of a priority over time. “We need to make sure it stays at the forefront of everybody’s minds.”
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