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Princeton School Board Election 2015 Endorsement Letters

election-2015Princeton Lucky to Have Sullivan Serving the Community

To the Editor:

Our children have either graduated from high school or currently attend the public schools, so we share a passion for the quality, diversity and inclusiveness of our schools and for their excellent stewardship. We therefore strongly support the re-election of Patrick Sullivan to the school board on November 3.

No other candidate has Pat Sullivan’s broad experience and deep, detailed understanding of the district’s complicated budget and financial picture and its complex operations and programs. Pat also brings impressive legal and analytical skills to his decision-making. Importantly, Pat understands that making decisions in the best interests of students is almost never a simple or obvious process. As a fiduciary for our children and our public schools, Pat has demonstrated great discernment and painstaking care in understanding complex situations, weighing competing interests and making difficult, nuanced choices.

Just as important as his expertise and experience are Pat’s great compassion and concern for the children in our schools. During his board service, Pat has tenaciously focused on enhancing the educational experiences for our children who have unconventional learning needs or strengths, and on expanding opportunities for children who come to our schools at a disadvantage due to family income, native language or background. Through his hard work on the district’s Strategic Plan Steering Committee, Pat made certain that inclusiveness and individualized learning, combined with high expectations and hopes for all children, were a driving principle in each of the Strategic Plan’s five goals.

We are lucky to have Pat Sullivan serving this community on the school board. We urge you to vote for him (ballot position #3) on November 3.

Leticia Fraga Nadler
Larry Spruill
Ross Wishnick

Baglio Will Make a Difference

It is with great pleasure and enthusiasm that we write to support Elizabeth (Betsy) Kalber Baglio as a candidate for the Princeton school board. She is smart, hardworking, and truly gifted at bringing people together. We have worked with  Betsy on numerous initiatives and are confident that she will marshal her considerable talents to make a difference for all  students in the district.

Betsy and her husband Steve, both graduates of Princeton University, returned to Princeton in 2011 with their two young
sons. Before making Princeton her home, Betsy earned a Master’s Degree in Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education and worked in many different capacities as an educator – as a public school teacher, professional developer, consultant to school districts, and grant writer. She has been an active volunteer at her children’s schools, at her church, and at the University. Regardless of the venue, Betsy brings with her energy and dedication. Any program of which she is a part is better for it.

Betsy is a true collaborator, as evidenced by her involvement with two major efforts at Community Park (CP) School. As part of the Community Park Dual Language Initiative Study Group, Betsy worked closely with CP’s Principal, Princeton  Public Schools (PPS) staff, outside consultants, and parents to look into the feasibility and value of the program and to ensure a smooth rollout for students at CP. Now that the program is in place, Betsy organizes meetings with PPS staff and parents of children in the program to discuss thoughts or concerns. After listening carefully, she works together with parents and educators to find solutions to issues raised. Betsy works hard so that all students get the best out of this innovative program.

As vice president of clubs and activities for CP’s PTO, Betsy launched a much-needed after-school clubs program at the
school. Before implementing the program, she communicated with CP faculty about what clubs they might like to teach and worked with the PTO coordinators at the other three elementary schools to learn from their experience. She went  even further by assembling a meeting with District staff and PTO representatives to share best practices. She worked with the faculty to put together a variety of clubs that enrich the students’ academic experience and provide teachers with the opportunity to get to know students outside of the classroom. This collaboration has enhanced the overall
learning experience at CP.

In all that she has done – as a parent and an active volunteer in the district and as an experienced educator – Betsy has shown herself to be kind, measured, and thoughtful. Adept at the art of triage, Betsy is able to juggle multiple priorities ensuring that everything gets done well and in a timely manner. Betsy will, without a doubt, be an effective voice on the Princeton school board for all our students, parents, staff and community members. Having worked closely with her, we strongly urge you to vote Betsy Baglio (ballot position #1) on November 3.

Anna and Jon Horner
Ann and Kurt Kovalick
Jesse and Teena Lerman
Linda Noel and Scott McGoldrick
Leslie and Clancy Rowley
Jean and Brett Shaver
Tara and AJ Sikma
Phyllis Stinson and Ed Roche
Karyn and Ed Weber
Mana and Scott Winters

Dodge and Kendal Are Informed and Engaged

We are writing in support of Rob Dodge and Dafna Kendal, candidates in the upcoming Princeton Public Schools’ Board of Education election.

Dafna and Rob are engaged, committed, and informed parents of PPS students. Over this past year of difficult teacher contract negotiations, Rob and Dafna demonstrated their willingness to commit the time and energy needed to understand the complex issues facing our schools. At the Board’s public meetings, they regularly spoke with passion, compassion, and insight.

Among Dafna and Rob’s many laudable positions, we are particularly impressed by their commitment to Board transparency and open communication. As regular Board meeting attendees, Rob and Dafna understand the importance of educating the public about the Board’s decisions and its decision-making processes, and of providing opportunities for community engagement and input. Given the budgetary constraints our growing district will almost certainly face over the next several years, such transparency and dialogue will be more important than ever.

We urge you to vote for Rob and Dafna on November 3rd.

Sincerely,

Jane Manners and Abigail Rose

Dodge and Kendal Care about District’s Future

As concerned parents of students in the Princeton Public Schools, we support Rob Dodge and Dafna Kendal for seats on the Board of Education.

At Board meetings throughout this past year, Rob has regularly brought up important points about the budget and increasing overcrowding in our schools, advocating preparation now and a close working relationship with the municipal council to effectively manage future class sizes and resources for our children. Beyond these core concerns, Rob has a clear and nuanced understanding of the wide variety of local, state, and even national issues that are important to our schools.

Dafna has shown a rare willingness to ask tough questions, and her training as a lawyer helps her get to the root of thorny problems. She is committed to providing all students in the district with the best possible opportunities to learn, from those who need extra help to learn effectively to those who thrive with extra enrichment. Dafna will be sure to keep the Board focused on the central issue: The quality of our children’s education.

Rob and Dafna have both shown their concern for the future of our school system, for their own children and all of our children. As Board of Education members, they will work hard to ensure that “Princeton” remains synonymous with “education” at all levels.

Owen O’Donnell and Amy Goldstein

Community Contributor

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