Seven candidates are running for three seats on the nonpartisan, at-large Dorchester District 2 School Board.

Incumbents Lisa Tupper and Barbara Crosby are seeking re-election, but Bo Blanton, who served on the board since 1996, is not running again. He attended his last meeting as a board member on Oct. 22.

Tupper and Crosby are challenged by Harry Blake, Sam Clark, David DuBose, Louis Smith and Justin Farnsworth.

All of the candidates have said they support the districtís $179.9 million general obligation bond referendum, which will be used to build four new schools and renovate several others.

Asked what they feel needs to change in the district, their answers were:

Blake: Being more diversified in all our departments.

Clark: Graduation rates must keep improving.

Crosby : With evening school, tutorial opportunities, and other programs we have in place, we will save more of our children from dropping out of school.

DuBose: I think we should focus on the noncollege-bound children a little more. Not every child is college material but have a lot to offer in other areas.

Farnsworth: We need to adapt and plan better for the continued growth of Dorchester County.

Smith: I believe that the district can do more to reduce the drop-out rate, the expulsion rate, teen pregnancy, and increase parental involvement.

Tupper: (We need to) ensure graduates have a marketable skill or can attend college, expose children earlier to career options, increase the graduation rate, keep all stakeholders accountable.