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KMOX urges listeners to 'erase the school board'

By Adam Allington, KWMU

St. Louis, MO – A local media outlet, KMOX radio, caused a stir on Wednesday when they broadcast an announcement calling for the elimination of the St. Louis Public School Board.

The house-produced service announcement featured a booming announcer urging listeners to "Erase the school board" by calling the state education department.

Dave Ervin, the General Manager of KMOX didn't see this as compromising journalistic neutrality. He says it's more like editorial and listeners will know the difference.

"Media outlets take stands all the time, it's the editorial staff at KMOX who has elected to take this stand," says Irvin.

The school board is currently the subject of controversy as the state department of education considers stripping the board of power.

Still, organizations such as the St. Louis teachers union were shocked to hear a media organization calling listeners to action on the issue. Byron Clemens is the unions Vice President.

"When I talked to both the general manager and the vice president of operations at first they seemed kind of proud of themselves and this was all ok with them, says Byron. "Then when I mentioned the FCC they changed their tune and said they would be interested in getting another point of view."

Clemens says listeners who called the union office thought the announcement was a commercial. Dave Ervin says the issue was too important for the station not to take a stand.