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Hear from candidates for Duval County School Board seats

FILE - The Duval County School Board meets on June 23, 2020.
FILE - The Duval County School Board meets on June 23, 2020. (Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Among the races on the ballot on the Florida Primary ballot next month are school board seats. In Duval County, four of seven seats will be up for election this year.

The winners of those elections will make major decisions like COVID-19 safety measures, possible budget cuts, implementing revenue from the half-cent sales tax for capital improvements, if it passes, and much more.

The Jacksonville Public Education Fund is holding forums for four nights to help voters to help you decide which candidate to support.

Rachael Tutwiler Fortune, president of the JPEF, told News4Jax the questions in the forums are crafted to prompt authentic answers from the candidates rather than having an exchange of campaign slogans.

The forums, which we will stream on News4Jax.com, will take place Monday through Thursday:

District 1: Arlington and Northside -- Monday 6-8 p.m. (watch video)

  • Candidates: Kelly Coker, Kory Von Leue and Lew Welge.
  • Co-host: News4Jax anchor Melanie Lawson

District 3: San Marco and part of Southside -- Tuesday 6-8 p.m.

  • Candidates: Robert Abene, Chris Guerrieri, James Jacobs and Cindy Pearson
  • Co-host: Emily Bloch of the Florida Times-Union

District 5: Urban core, Northwest Jacksonville and Riverside, Avondale and near Westside -- Wednesday 6-8 p.m.

  • Warren Jones and Brenda Ann Jordan
  • Co-host: Lynn Jones of the Jacksonville Free Press

District 7: Mandarin and rest of Southside-- Thursday 6-8 p.m.

  • Candidates: Lori Hershey, Matt Schellenberg and John Turner
  • Co-host: Melissa Ross of WJCT

Later this month, News4Jax will post our Voter’s Guide with background information on each of the candidates to help citizens prepare to vote.