Shambra Mulder’s long — and sometimes lonely — advocacy for minority students wins her our endorsement in the Nov. 6 race for a seat on the Fayette County Public Schools board.
As past chair of the Lexington NAACP’s education committee, Mulder has documented inequities affecting black children and spoken out about them at school board meetings. She has raised concerns about achievement gaps, disproportionate suspensions and a shortage of black educators in the local schools, among other issues.
As she moves to the other side of the dais, she will have to make the transition from outsider to team player, from only zeroing in on shortcomings to also applauding progress, supporting successes and building morale.
She has the background and skills to contribute to the board and district. A Navy veteran, Mulder earned undergraduate and graduate degrees at the University of Kentucky, including a Ph.D. in educational psychology in 2010. She was a school psychologist in Woodford County and an assistant education professor at Kentucky State University where she trained special-education teachers.
She’s now a private psychologist specializing in children and adolescents. She is the mother of two students in Fayette County schools.
The other candidate, Tyler Murphy, would also make an able school board member and advocate for youngsters. A graduate of Transylvania University and a social studies teacher at Boyle County High School, Murphy has a sharp grasp of what effective teaching requires and an inspiring dedication to public education and community service. We urge him to stay involved because he has a lot to offer.
District 2 has been represented since 2001 by Doug Barnett who did not seek re-election. It covers northwestern Lexington and includes students who attend Bryan Station and Paul Laurence Dunbar high schools; Bryan Station, Lexington Traditional Magnet and Winburn middle schools, and elementaries stretching from Russell Cave and Sandersville to Deep Springs, Mary Todd and William Wells Brown.
The unendorsed candidate may submit a 250-word response by noon Thursday.