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Charlottesville parent groups to host School Board candidate forum Thursday

All five candidates for the Charlottesville School Board will field questions from the community during a forum Thursday, the only one scheduled so far.

The Black Parents Association and CCS Joint PTO are hosting the virtual forum, which will start at 6:30 p.m. Youth Nex, a center at the University of Virginia focused on positive youth development, is supporting the forum as well.

Five people are vying for three spots on the School Board, which are on the ballot this year.

The candidates are Christa Bennett, chief operating officer of Strive for College, real estate agent Emily Dooley, board chairwoman Lisa Larson-Torres, Albemarle County educator Dom Morse, and longtime board member Leah Puryear. Juandiego Wade’s term also is expiring this year, but he opted to run for the City Council instead of seeking re-election to the School Board.

Early voting is currently underway, and Election Day is Nov. 2.

Organizers said the forum was aimed at being driven by parents and guardians, students and teachers. Questions can be submitted online via a form at A forum working group will review, consolidate and finalize the questions.

Daniel Fairley, the city’s youth opportunity coordinator, will facilitate.

The forum will be live-streamed on Facebook at or individuals can join via Zoom at The Zoom password is CCS2021.


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