In 2015, a group of concerned Blue Valley parents and patrons came together to discuss what could be done about repeated attacks against our award-winning school district.
State budget cuts, which started during the great Recession but were continued and worsened by Brownback and his supporters, were harming our schools.
We were angered by the actions of legislators in our area. Their confusing and conflicting statements about school funding, and their attempts to legislate how local school districts manage funds, troubled us deeply. They claimed to support our schools and to be pro-public education candidates, but when elected, they voted against our schools.
We saw dark-money Americans for Prosperity back an ultraconservative candidate for our Blue Valley School Board. And we said enough is enough.
We recognized that repeated attacks on educators, our own school district, our school board, and public education in general were demoralizing to our teachers, support staff and other stakeholders. We were concerned that their votes and actions would hurt Blue Valley property values and our local economy over time.
We were alarmed by the coordinated attacks of anti-public education forces. These attacks were not just coming from outside special interests – they were coming from our very own legislators. We understood how these attacks would severely impact Blue Valley schools if not stopped.
We knew that Blue Valley voters do value our schools, but have a hard time finding the truth about who “really” supports our schools. If armed with the correct information, Blue Valley patrons will vote to support our schools.
Based on our desire to protect our Blue Valley public schools, property values and local economy, Stand Up Blue Valley was born. Our group immediately set about the work of defending our public schools, the foundation of this thriving community. Over time, we were joined by hundreds of other Blue Valley patrons who value our schools - parents, business owners, and elders in our community – all of whom want to elect officials who will support public education and protect our quality of life.
Stand Up Blue Valley will combat misinformation with facts. We will keep Blue Valley residents informed about issues impacting our schools. We will document how our elected officials vote and what they are saying about public education and our school district. We will support confirmed pro-education candidates. We will spread the word among our neighbors about what can and must be done to protect Blue Valley. We are determined to support our district by informing Blue Valley voters about the political process and issues important to our schools. We will work to ensure that our school district has the support necessary to continue the educational excellence that makes Blue Valley a great community for families and businesses alike.
Before the August 2, 2016 Kansas Primary, Stand Up Blue Valley worked to arm patrons with the facts about how their legislators had voted to defund our schools, undermine teachers, abolish curriculum, and enact policies that were harmful to our district. Blue Valley voters ousted every extremist, anti-public education legislator who had a moderate challenger on the ballot. Incumbents who had aligned with anti-public school forces were replaced with moderates - Republicans and Democrats - who better represented the interests of Blue Valley. Significant damage was prevented and some was undone.
Unfortunately, the August 2018 and 2020 Republican primaries saw a return to Republican extremism in Blue Valley. Tens of thousands of dollars flooded our area from outside special interests - largely funded by Koch Industries and their organizations.
Every year in August and November, Blue Valley voters will have choices between candidates who support our schools, and those who do not -but may say they do. We must elect legislators, school board members, State Board of Education members, and county commissioners who will respect public education and educators - not make repeated negative statements and work against them. Working to undermine our public schools is the same as working to undermine the fabric of our community.
Check your legislators’ voting records on our Voting Hub – we make it easy to do. Sign up for our emails. Like and Follow our Facebook page. Print off our Voting Guide to take with you to the polls. Vote for candidates who will represent their constituents and support our Blue Valley schools.