Arlington School Board race a rematch

ARLINGTON — For the second time, Jim Weiss and Glen Reid are facing off over a seat on the Arlington School Board.

Four years ago, Weiss, a manufacturing engineer for the Boeing Co., beat Reid to win his current seat on the board.

Reid isn’t happy with Weiss’ performance and is calling for a rematch.

“My opponent is a nice guy, but he doesn’t have the vaguest idea what the hell’s going on,” said Reid, a retired chemist for the Food and Drug Administration. “I’ve met him. He’s a well-meaning citizen, but he has no idea what education is all about — and that’s (true) for the whole school board.”

Weiss said he’s learned a lot while on the board and has a record of working together with other board members to get things done.

“It takes five of us to be an effective board,” said Weiss, 41. “It takes three of us to make a decision. Not that I’m not always in step with everyone else in how they think and approach things, but I do know how to be a team player. From my opponent’s history, he’s not.”

Reid served a single term on the board between 1991 and 1995. He lost a re-election bid. In the past dozen years, he has sought every opportunity to get re-elected, without success.

Reid, 79, is highly critical of both the Arlington School District and the general state of education in the U.S. He referred to the Washington Assessment of Student Learning test as “a fraud and failure” and said the district’s math textbooks are “silly nonsense.” He called the new Arlington High School, which opened in 2003, “Taj Mahal High” and said the district needs to stop building “big, real expensive schools.”

“The whole education program is a total failure,” he said. “We have kids who can’t read and can’t write. …. The teachers are badly trained. The education program at the University of Washington is ridiculous nonsense.”

Weiss sees a brighter picture. He’s tired of unfunded mandates and said district staff need to spend money more responsibly, but, overall, he believes Arlington Schools are doing all right. If re-elected, he said he’d work to get more technology in schools and curriculum that better prepares students for the future.

“I alone can’t change anything,” he said. “I could be a disruption, but I know that working together with the other board members I can make a difference through the collective. It’s a team approach.”

Reporter Kaitlin Manry: 425-339-3292 or kmanry@heraldnet.com.

Arlington School Board, District 2

Jim Weiss

Age: 41

Occupation: a manufacturing engineer for the Boeing Co. in Everett.

Glen Reid

Age: 79

Occupation: a retired chemist for the Food and Drug Administration

About the job: The School Board meets several times a month to make policy decisions for the Arlington School District. Board members earn $50 for each official event they attend and request reimbursement for.

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