November 8, 2023


We the People for Education Helps Elect Common Sense School Board Candidates Across Virginia

New nonprofit leads charge to turn extremist tide on Commonwealth’s school boards


RICHMOND, VA – Today, We the People for Education, a nonpartisan nonprofit that champions common sense leadership on local school boards, announced the results of their first campaign cycle, which showed a statewide rejection of extremism in public education.

We the People for Education provided general support for dozens of school board races across the Commonwealth, including a majority of first-time candidates who went on to win their elections. Of the dozens of races that received support, We the People strategically invested additional resources in 34 races statewide, and 24 were able to claim victory on Tuesday.

Voters came out in force to elect new leadership that better reflects the students they represent and the values of the communities they serve, including in Spotsylvania, Loudoun, Gloucester, and Montgomery Counties. In every corner of the Commonwealth, voters saw through attempts to ban books, stoke culture war issues, and pit parents against teachers. 

These results further support what We the People for Education’s Executive Director Tiffany Van Der Hyde has heard from community members.

“While culture wars tend to make headlines, I hear parents talking about student safety and bus schedules,” Van Der Hyde said. “I hear teachers talking about funding and resources. I hear students talking about their freedom to learn. These are the things our school board members should focus on, not divisive political issues that do nothing to serve our kids.”

In recent months, some of the same areas that saw major electoral shifts on Tuesday made headlines for their school-board based extremism, from books bans in Spotsylvania and violent far-right groups descending on school board meetings in Gloucester, to right wing extremism in Montgomery and dangerous disinformation campaigns in Loudoun. 

“But these radical ideologies and extremist candidates are, unfortunately, present in communities all across Virginia,” Van Der Hyde said. “However, we know that when we challenge them, push back, and run positive, student-focused campaigns, we can win.”

Despite the hyper-partisanship that has gripped both national and local politics, We the People supported a diverse slate of candidates for these nonpartisan races.

“We take the ‘nonpartisan’ label seriously, because our work isn’t about politics, it’s about students,” Van Der Hyde said. “It doesn’t matter which party you support in your day to day life. What matters is that you’re committed to uniting your community around proven solutions instead of dividing people along imaginary fault lines. We’re proud to have both donors and candidates who identify with different political parties but who understand that this work extends beyond political affiliation. Our schools should never be political.”

Going forward, We the People will embark on the next phase of their mission, supporting local school board leaders they helped elect, working with parents to hold them accountable, and identifying, recruiting, and training school board leaders for the future.


We the People for Education is a Virginia-based nonprofit focused on recruiting, training and supporting common-sense school board leaders. By empowering reasonable, pro-public education community members to push back against divisiveness and extremism, we aim to bring teachers, parents, students and communities together to champion proven solutions to the real challenges our schools face. Learn more about our work and get involved at