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Controversial Baton Rouge school board member says she won't seek re-election

3 weeks 16 hours 16 minutes ago Friday, September 02 2022 Sep 2, 2022 September 02, 2022 1:27 PM September 02, 2022 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - A longtime East Baton Rouge School Board member who's been mired in controversy in recent years says she plans to step away from the board after serving on it for more than a decade.

Connie Bernard announced her decision not to seek re-election in a letter to students and parents Friday morning, a little more than two months before the fall election. To the last-minute withdrawal means Bernard's name will still show up on the ballot within her district.

Bernard has been at the center of multiple controversies in recent years, including a profane rant aimed at teens who were partying at her neighbor's home back in 2018. The tirade was caught on video, and Bernard would eventually relinquish her role as the school board's vice president amid the backlash.

Bernard would once again face calls to resign, some from her own peers, in 2020 after she was caught online shopping during a meeting where the board discussed renaming Lee High School, talks that came during a push to remove Confederate monuments across the country. She also faced criticism for comments she made about the school's former namesake, Confederate General Robert E. Lee, during that same meeting.

Read Bernard's full statement below.

After serving the students of East Baton Parish and residents of District 8 for the past 12 years as a member of the School Board, I have decided to not seek re-election. This has been a very difficult decision and I apologize for the unfortunate timing in that my name will continue to be on the November ballot, however, I will not be an active candidate. It has been a great honor and privilege to serve as your School Board Member during this time. I have worked hard to represent you and to lead improvements for our students and our community, and I will continue to work in your best interest until the end of the term. I very much appreciate the opportunity you have given me to serve as your representative and will cherish the memories, the many relationships built, your prayers and goodwill extended.”
With sincere thanks and appreciation,

Connie Bernard

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