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During the 2016 election season, WHQR will bring you profiles of the candidates running in New Hanover County for: New Hanover County Board of CommissionersNew Hanover County Board of Education The primary elections will be held on Tuesday, March 15th. As a reminder, voters will need to bring photo identification to the polls. You can read more about voting in North Carolina here, and you can check your voter status and voter precinct here.This fall, look for WHQR's coverage of the general election. We will bring you the 2016 Candidate Forums.

Candidate Profile 2016: Chris Meek (D), NHC Board of Education

Chris Meek
Chris Meek

Chris Meek, a history teacher with twenty years of experience in the classroom, is one of five Democrats in New Hanover County hoping to secure a spot for Board of Education on the November ballot.  On March 15th, voters will choose three candidates from each party to compete in the November election.  

Listen to the full interview here.

Chris Meek says the Board of Education cannot fix issues like overcrowding, youth violence, and achievement gaps on its own. He says it needs to become more involved with the community, as well as county and city officials:

"What I’ve noticed is the City and the County have been working in the communities to try to make them safer, holding community meetings and such, but one noticeably absent body is representation from the schools. The one agency, the one segment of our society that has the most contact with kids is absent from the conversation. And how can we protect our kids if we’re only worried about the crime aspect of it, not the education aspect of it?"

If elected, Chris Meek says he’d work to raise graduation rates.  He says the new Career Technical Education high school is a step in the right direction, but he also wants to explore online classes and cooperative learning opportunities:

"They get jobs in the afternoon, and those jobs are not just for their money, but they’re also learning experiences in the trades. That’s something that we did at my school up in New York City was a cooperative learning experience. Kids got hands-on experience in a trade, they were tracked by a coordinator, and they got paid to go to school, and I think there are a lot of kids out there who would love to get paid to go to school."