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Parkland Families Rip School-Board-Election Results

Ryan Petty, whose daughter was killed during the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School attack, testifies to the Senate Judiciary Committee during a hearing about legislative proposals to improve school safety, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., March 14, 2018. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)

Only one of two parents of Parkland shooting victims won their bid for a seat on the Broward County School Board on Tuesday night.

Lori Alhadeff lost her daughter Alyssa during the Valentine’s Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, which took 17 lives. She easily won her bid for the District 4 seat, which includes Parkland, with 65 percent of the vote, running on a platform of “more leadership, more transparency and more accountability to the Broward County school system.”

“I am so excited. I am elated,” Alhadeff said. “I can’t wait to start making change and start making an impact on the school board.”

Losing to longtime incumbents were Ryan Petty, whose daughter Alaina was killed in the Parkland shooting, and former MSD teacher Richard Mendelson, whose best friend, Coach Aaron Feis, died shielding students during the shooting.

The winners in those districts, current school-board members Laurie Rich Levinson and Donna Korn, have been criticized for their response to the shooting.

In a meeting earlier this month, Korn said the district had an “amazing school year,” according to the district’s director of school safety and security, April Schentrup, who lost her daughter Carmen in the shooting.

Student survivors and families of the victims expressed disgust with the election results.

“Broward should be ashamed and embarrassed,” student survivor Kyle Kashuv told National Review.

“The people who facilitated an environment where something like this could occur, were just re-elected,” another Broward County student, Kenneth Preston, agreed. “It’s a stain on our county and voters.”

“I’m disappointed after 17 lives were taken in the most preventable mass shooting the voter turnout was low and our incompetent school board members got elected to a third term,” Hunter Pollack, who lost his sister, told National Review.

“Truly disappointing that the people of Broward didn’t rally behind the people that lost loved ones in the school shooting,” his father, Andrew Pollack wrote on Twitter. “Instead they weaponized the deaths to push an agenda, went to DC to protest Donald Trump & then they voted for the people responsible for what happened.”

Petty was endorsed by Republican senator Orrin Hatch after urging Congress to pass the STOP School Violence Act.

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