Beverly Vista parent is trying to make history as being only the second write-in candidate to win a Beverly Hills election in recent memory.
Margo joined the Nov. 8 race for one of three seats on the Board of Education after Traffic and Parking Commissioner Andy Licht last month, leaving just three contenders. Board Vice President lawyer and producer/educator are also competing. Licht’s name will remain on the ballot in accordance with California law.
Mayor Barry Brucker won a seat on the Board of Education in 1997 in the last successful write-in effort in Beverly Hills. Like Brucker, Margo faces the additional challenge of teaching people how to properly fill out a ballot to vote for a write-in candidate, whose statement does not appear on the ballot.
“My goal is to meet each of my voters,” Margo told Patch. “Then I can educate them on how to fill out the ballot.”
The father of three has temporarily resigned from his current position as the Beverly Vista PTA co-president and will resign permanently if he wins a school board seat. He had planned to stay at the PTA for a few years before an eventual run for the school board. But when Licht dropped out, he was not happy with the remaining candidates.
“There are so many pressing issues before the board—this is not the time for on-the-job training,” he said.
As a graduate himself of the Beverly Hills schools system, Margo said his experience as a student, as a current parent and as a former school teacher will help achieve his goal of making city schools the best in the state. Margo taught in the Los Angeles Unified School District for 10 years before retiring in 2006 when his third child was born. He has maintained his teaching credentials.
Margo’s campaign centers around four promises:
- Encourage and support all stakeholders, including parents, teachers, administrators and students. He considers it vital for parents to be active in the effort to improve schools.
- Invigorate the curriculum for all students, incorporating technology alongside the latest proven educational practices.
- Preseve the historic integrity of school campuses as they are modernized through Measure E.
- Strengthen and nurture the Board of Education relationship with the City Council.
Margo said many voters tell him that improving the relationship between the council and school board members should be a top priority. There has been much tension between the two legislative bodies over the approach towards fighting the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s plan to tunnel under Beverly Hills High School, as well as the council’s recent vote to on the BHHS campus in 2016.
“I agree with the goals of the school board, but not necessarily their level of confrontation,” he said. “These entities should set an example for the rest of the community.”
For more information about Margo, including instructions on how to vote for a write-in candidate, visit his website. Check back with Patch next week for profiles of the remaining two board candidates.