TCAPS Board Candidates Decry Voting Bloc, Form Voting Bloc

There’s a super testy Traverse City Area Public Schools Board of Education election on at the moment. It’s the status quo versus the not status quo. It’s the Paul Soma in versus Paul Soma out election. It’s getting super dramatic.

Five candidates are running with shared resources and shared communications. They’re running on the same platform – accountability, standards, etc. They call themselves TEAM5 TCAPS.

Opponents are current board members Sue Kelly and Matt Anderson along with retired teachers Pamela Forton and Jeff Leonhardt.

Board candidate Matt Anderson calls it a “dangerous thing for our community.”

Board candidate Pamela Forton says she would be “very concerned” if she knew there were five people on the board that could decide everything. It’s “very, very dangerous,” she says.

So what gets me about these people who are criticizing the TEAM5 group is that they’re immediately turning around and asking for voters to vote for them as a group. Matt Anderson goes so far as to circle the names he wants you to vote for at the end of his clip criticizing the TEAM 5 group for running as a group. This is a shot from a Facebook post he put up on the topic:

So Matt Anderson, Pamela Forton, M. Sue Kelly and Jeff Leonhardt want you to know that voting groups are bad, but then Anderson immediately turns around and tells you to vote for his voting group in his own campaign material. For people who claim not to be a voting bloc, they’re two current board members and two retired teachers. Sounds awfully tight to me.

Hello,It’s me,

The candidate forum is online here:


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3 thoughts on “TCAPS Board Candidates Decry Voting Bloc, Form Voting Bloc”

  1. Matt Anderson is not being a hypocrite. The other candidates are being forced too look as a group because the other candidates decided to run together for one childish reason – to fire Paul Soma. The goal of ‘Team 5″ is to fire Soma. The other candidates don’t have yard signs together, or pictures together, and are NOT being funded as a group primarily by two people. THEY ARE CLEARLY NOT RUNNING AS A SLATE. Supporting other candidates is not running as a voting block. This election for a volunteer position has gotten out of hand and too dramatic. News flash Team 5, this isn’t high school any more. Grow up, please. Voting for the 5 would put our schools in danger. Open your eyes.

    1. I thought this article summed up the situation very accurately.

      So ironic that the current board members running are sooo concerned with some “voting block”
      concept (their word) when they have voted unanimously 90%+ of the time. This is a classic smear/fear campaign the existing board members are running.
      It’s time for a change. 26 of 31 principals voted no confidence in Soma. Please explain how that’s acceptable.

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