Republican Ellen Weaver elected as SC superintendent of education – Greenville News

by | Nov 9, 2022 | Education

This story is being provided for free as a service of The Greenville News, Spartanburg Herald-Journal and Anderson Independent-Mail. Please support local journalism with a digital subscription.In what was the last consequential statewide race to be called, Republican Ellen Weaver defeated Lisa Ellis, a teacher and a fusion candidate representing both the Democratic and Alliance parties, to be elected as the new state superintendent of education.With all precincts reporting by Nov. 9, Weaver won with 55.57% of the vote to Ellis’ 42.7%, with 39.55% as a Democrat and 3.15% with the Alliance party.Weaver claimed her victory in a Tuesday night speech, telling parents that “help was on the way,” saying that her vision and collaboration with community stakeholders could usher in an “education revolution.” Ellis released a concession statement Wednesday morning. In it, she touted her campaign’s accomplishments and thanked educators and families and vowed to keep pushing for change.”We will continue to stay persistent and continue to fight for every student to have a high-quality education in our state,” she said in the statement. “We have mobilized voters across our state who previously did not feel their voice mattered; we have given teachers and families a choice in who represents them and empowered them to use their voice.”South Carolina GOP Chair Drew McKissick, in what was expected to be the blueprint for this year’s elections, referenced how education had been a focal point of last year’s gubernatorial race in Virginia. Back then, now Gov. Glenn Youngkin trounced his Democratic opposition by making opposition to critical race theory, a college-level course, a campaign platform to edge out his competition.No Democrat has held a statewide office since 2006 when Jim Rex was elected to the position of superintendent of education. Though Ellis boasted more people donating to her cause, she remained outmatched thanks to Weaver’s big-dollar contributions.Weaver battles contentious master’s degree and wins big in runoffsIn the June primaries, Weaver was trailing behind her Republican competitor Kathy Maness, executive director of the Palmetto State Teachers Association, until the close contest between the two led to a runoff. Outgoing state Superintendent Molly Spearman had initially endorsed Maness for the role.However, during the runoffs, Weaver, bankrolled by prominent business owners and politicians in and o …

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