Letters to the Editor, Oct. 11, 2019

Elections letters

Wiest’s skills a match for school board

Dr. Francine Wiest has the skills needed for the Bellevue School Board. A board member is responsible for policy analysis, budget review and evaluating the superintendent. Francine is a proven leader who understands how to keep the best of Bellevue while addressing areas of improvement.

Francine brings 25-plus years of nonprofit board service and national, state and local education policy committee leadership. While the challenger may claim to have experience, attending an occasional meeting is not comparable to Francine’s work as a PTA president and ongoing commitment to Bellevue public schools where she creates school-wide events that support every student, not just a few. Many parents help with their kids’ activities; Francine goes above and beyond that by developing and improving systems to support all students.

Francine’s leadership stems from decades of working on large systems. Two of many examples: her work involves proposing policies to overhaul entire health delivery systems, and she was instrumental in reforming work hours that affect every physician-in-training in the United States.

As a school board member, Francine has continued to promote goals and activities for all students. She understands that to achieve equity for students, to provide them what they need, we must go beyond simply saying we will help them. Francine asks the right questions, gathers the relevant facts, and promotes plans and systems that will enable meaningful improvement.

Francine’s skills are substantial and relevant to what a school board member needs to do the job. We are fortunate to have someone with her caliber of leadership and experience serving our Bellevue schools. Read more about her endorsement in The Seattle Times and on her website. Please join me in voting for Francine Wiest to remain on the school board where her skills match Bellevue’s needs.

Shabri Kelkar


Reject Referendum 88

As an immigrant and a Bellevue resident for almost a quarter of a century, and a proud father of three boys born and raised here, I have personally witnessed what a dramatic progress the city, the county and the state have made since voters passed Washington Civil Rights Act 21 years ago with overwhelmingly large margin of more than 58 percent. City of Bellevue in particular has thrived with more diversity than ever with robust economy during the same period of time.

Now, do you believe that state government should roll back the clock by repealing Washington Civil Rights Act and have different rules for different races again? If your answer is “No,” then your only choice when you receive your ballot is to vote to reject Referendum 88/Initiative 1000.

Current state law requires that everyone is treated equally. Referendum 88/Initiative 1000 would change that to impose “racial quotas” in public hiring, admissions to colleges and universities and in deciding if a business wins a government contract.

Under Referendum 88/Initiative 1000 your race will matter in every aspect of your life. At a time when society is so divided and polarized, why would we raise racial tensions by allowing the government to discriminate against anyone based on race?

Please vote to reject Referendum 88/Initiative 1000.

Kan Qiu