Two first-time candidates are running against each other for a position on the Concrete School Board.
Ed Bradel, a retired educator, and Paul Rogge, lead mechanic for Janicki Logging, face each other for an at-large position on the board in the Nov. 3 election.
Rogge, a Concrete High School graduate, said he is running to make sure all students have the same opportunities he did.
“I have a son attending the Concrete school district and would like to help our leaders come up with good solid common sense decisions that can help our students stay in school and learn as I did as a student in Concrete,” Rogge said.
Rogge volunteers with the East County Water Rescue team, and has been a volunteer with fire department as well as a reserve officer for the former Concrete Police Department.
“I have love for my community and want to help the kids,” he said.
Bradel also said he was running out of concern for Concrete students’ education, particularly when it comes to in-person learning, which he previously said would be the biggest issue facing the winning candidate.
“All students should have a full-time, in-person educational experience available to them without COVID-19 vaccination mandate, at least until a vaccine receives full FDA authorization,” Bradel responded in a questionnaire sent to him by the Skagit Valley Herald.
As far as in-person learning goes, Bradel said the district should spend the year trying to get kids back up to speed, then consider whether it should expand summer school options, he told the Skagit Valley Herald recently.
If elected, Bradel said he would need to spend time learning about the district, but said one thing he would be interested in the district pursuing would be transferring ownership of the Birdsview Grange Hall from the district to Skagit County Fire District 10.
“The hall would be renovated and made available as a community center for the upper valley community,” he said.
As for Gov. Jay Inslee’s mandate that all students, staff, and visitors to K-12 schools wear masks in buildings, Bradel said he would like to see the mandate end as soon as possible. Until then, he would like to see districts utilizing what he called more effective “surgical” masks instead of cloth facial coverings.
Rogge did not respond to a question about the mask mandate.