Candidates gear up for school board election

Candidates gear up for school board election
Miles Strelitz

The Eanes ISD school board election day takes place Saturday, May 4. Seat 5 is a hotly contested race between Kelly Marwill, Aaron Silva, and Catherine Walker. Seat four is between incumbent James Spradley and Robert Morrow. 

Marwill has a background as an Eanes ISD nurse, and she is also a parent of multiple middle schoolers in the district. Engaging with the community has become a major point in her campaign. 

“I was inspired to run for the school board by having worked in the school,” Marwill said. “During COVID, I substituted on all the campuses. While I was working in the schools with the different campuses and the different students and the different age groups, I noticed that we had a lot of kids that suffer from anxiety, and I wanted to get more involved in the school to make sure that we’re doing as much as we can to support our students, as well as our staff. We need to keep their mental health and wellness as a top focus.”

Marwill’s background has given her a unique viewpoint on changing the policies and focuses of the district. She plans to instantly create change if elected. 

“My number one priority will be the mental health and wellness of our students and staff,” Marwill said. “My number two priority is definitely retaining our amazing teachers. We need to do what we can to keep our focus on a positive and supportive school climate.”

Walker has a unique background as a CFO, as well as a member of a Bond Oversight Committee. She looks to take a more analytical approach to improving the district. 

“Long term budgeting within the school district is my main priority,” Walker said. “Funding for public education is always a challenge and a big issue. Spanish Immersion program funding is also a big issue, and it was a main attraction point for my family moving to Eanes.”

As a full Spanish Immersion family with multiple students within Eanes, Walker’s main catalyst for running was her children she said.  

“I have three children in the district, and they all receive special education for different disabilities,” Walker said. “As a parent, it was hard to get education for them, and I want to be able to make that a much bigger priority within the district.”

Spradley is very involved within the district, and he has two kids who graduated. He has been a long term volunteer at many schools, and he takes a very hands-on approach to improving the district. 

“I have been very involved in our community for over 20 years,” Spradley said. “I have served in many volunteer roles, including church, Scouts, school district committees, and in the Band Parent organization. I was asked by a retiring trustee, and fellow band parent, to run for election in her seat five years ago. She felt my experience would make me a good trustee. I was hesitant at first, but now I am glad I stepped up to serve the students, teachers, and citizens of Eanes ISD.”

Modernizing Eanes while maintaining the aspects that have made it a top-five school district in the U.S. is an important selling point for Spradley. 

“My first priority is maintaining the excellence we have come to appreciate in our schools,” Spradley said. “Not just academic excellence, but excellence in arts, sports, robotics, and all the things that help foster a well-rounded student. Secondly, I want to help keep our district on a sound financial footing.  We need to take care of our teachers and maintain our facilities to ensure we can provide the excellence I spoke to above. Third, I want to see through a long-range plan—a plan to provide up-to-date facilities for generations of Eanes ISD students to come.”

There are over seven locations throughout the community. The main locations are Hill Country Middle School and the Westlake Hills Randalls. 

Aaron Silva and Robert Morrow were reached out to but did not respond to the questionnaire.

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