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Letter: Raikes is a proven leader

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As a pediatrician serving families across southeast Nebraska, I first met Helen Raikes decades ago when we volunteered on an early childhood committee. I found her to be knowledgeable, passionate, wise, kind and industrious on behalf of children.

I have since followed her career, from working on early childhood development policies at a federal level to creating an early childhood education program for a rural Nebraska school district, inclusive of all preschool-aged children in the community.

She has the heart of an educator dedicated to optimizing the potential of every child. She desires that all students who graduate from high school are college and career-ready.

Nebraska ranks as one of the top 10 states for education. Raikes will preserve and advance this student achievement when serving on the Nebraska Board of Education. She wants all public, parochial and private schools to remain strong, since she believes in parental choice in education and local control.

Raikes has the soul of a servant-leader. She has an exemplary record of building consensus through respectful discourse with parents, teachers and administrators. This is essential for the state of Nebraska, the state Department of Education and the state Board of Education to progress.

I trust Helen Raikes to serve the best interests of all children. She is a proven leader in childhood education at the local, state and national levels. Please consider voting for her for the Nebraska Board of Education.

Eileen C. Vautravers, Lincoln

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