Ericka Ellis-Stewart said she is not running for reelection. She read the following statement during the June 25 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Board of Education meeting:
I wanted to take a moment this evening to share with our community that I will not seek re-election to a third term on the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education this fall.
For the last eight years, I have had the honor, privilege and pleasure to serve the entirety of Mecklenburg County as an advocate for children, their families and public education.
When I was first elected to this board in 2011, I was a 37-year-old mother with two school-age children of my own.
As I sit here today, six days from my 45th birthday and a literal empty-nester, I realize that it is time to allow others the chance to serve this community through elected service on this board.
While I am not seeking reelection, I do intend to remain an active and vocal member of the community as it relates to issues that impact all of us – education, mental health and economic mobility. I also plan to take some time to reinvest in myself by pursuing a master’s degree and taking on new responsibilities in my professional career.
Over the course of my last two terms, I have been a consistent voice for equity through the disruption of disproportionate discipline practices; increased rigor and expectation for all students especially those who have been traditionally and historically been under-served; and seeking to ensure investments of new construction and replacement schools across the entire community including those that are located within the crescent.
I have focused on ways to bring student voice to the forefront through student leadership and representation at the board dais. I have continually advocated to improve systems with the district and pushed for more transparent communication from the district to those we serve.
While the school system is far from perfect, I recognized that it should always strive for continual improvement in order to meet its mission of educating all children with excellence and a sense of urgency – and as a member of this board that has always been my goal.
As my time of service on this board winds down over the next six months, I will continue to serve with the same intention, thoughtfulness, hard questions and grace that you have witnessed over the past eight years.
Thank you for this amazing opportunity to serve.