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OPINION: BHS Board Challengers Make Convincing Case

Baron, Greenwell, and Moigis offer fresh ideas and an atmosphere of open discussion that has been lacking.

 

For those of you who did not see the League of Women Voters Candidate Forum for BHSD Board of Education Trustees on October 2, I encourage you to watch the televised rebroadcast. Many said the forum was among the best, most informative, most civilized seen in recent years.

It was, coincidentally, a display of remarkable agreements seasoned with widely divergent views about many important issues. In short, it was the type of discussion that should be the hallmark of Board of Education Meetings – not just reserved for campaign seasons. It was the slate of challengers that brought the diversity of opinion. They brought it with respect and good humor.

One of the challengers stressed his involvement in the Community Partnership Meetings as he tries to instill more accountability in the District. He highlighted his decades of experience in corporate finance tempered by his leadership of non-profit organizations. Another challenger stressed the need to bring the new high school to fruition within budget and on time while stressing the importance of focusing on those students (juniors and seniors) who will be disrupted but not enjoy the benefits of the new building. She also stressed the imperative that we move on beyond the one vs. two high school debate and begin the process of healing. The third challenger, with international experience, offered up the idea that the state mandated core curriculum should be the minimum standard for the District – not the maximum. He said we should build on it and strive to have all our students exceed it. He warned about chasing fads in education. It was a “back to basics” call.

These are the people with the fresh ideas. This is the atmosphere of open discussion that has been lacking. If you agree, open discussion of alternatives is an important part of arriving at a consensus, perhaps this discussion should be our model.

Unfortunately, the incumbents have not shown the desire to include open discussion before decisions are made. They have, instead, tended to make decisions and then spend time and money trying to convince the public the decisions are well thought out and virtuous. They have attempted to bury minority opinions.

I suggest you consider voting for the challengers, Baron, Greenwell, and Moigis, for BHSD Board of Education Trustees if you are tired of consistent 7 to 0 votes on important issues.

The viewpoints in this letter are those of the writer, and Patch is not responsible for any ideas portrayed as facts. For questions and clarifications, please leave a comment below or contact editor Art Aisner at Art.Aisner@patch.com.

Ken Jackson October 13, 2012 at 12:22 PM
Pat, Ms. Berndt is certainly not "clueless" -- that is just offensive. Apparently, you know nothing about Mr. Moigis other than he is running under the auspices of Chris Fellin and Jenny Greenwell so you support him. It is hard to take such an endorsement seriously.
-Elizabeth- October 13, 2012 at 01:18 PM
Pat, You are being unkind and inaccurate. Mrs. Berndt has been involved with this district for years first as a parent and as a community member. Her experience as an educator makes her qualified and definitely "clued in."
S Sera October 14, 2012 at 01:43 AM
Linda, Historically (and before the time when cynicism ruled the land), it was an honor for candidates for the Board of Education to receive the endorsement of and a campaign contribution from the teachers’ union. Five years ago, Mrs. Day accepted a contribution from our district's teachers’ union that, until this election, no one would have raised an objection to. After all, it is hard to believe that any board trustee would be unduly influenced in favor of the teachers’ union in exchange for a campaign contribution of a few hundred dollars. Thus, it is easy to understand why she would have accepted the donation. Since that time – and sadly -- some public sentiment about this issue has turned, making it a negative to some people for the teachers’ union to inform the public about and financially support those candidates they believe best support the mission of our school district. As a result, Mrs. Day publicly vowed not to accept campaign contributions from the BHEA or any other group that might give the appearance of impropriety.
S Sera October 14, 2012 at 01:44 AM
Since you decided to cast aspersions as to Mrs. Day's character, I took the time to look at her campaign finance records from that time and, other than the BHEA, there was no other organized group whose contracts come before the board that she accepted a contribution from. Stating that Mrs. Day accepted campaign funds from any entity other than the teachers’ union is nothing but a falsehood. It is sad that this is the standard operating procedure for some. Veracity is a virtue. Try it sometime!
Marcia Robovitsky October 19, 2012 at 02:20 PM
I have already voted for Ms. Greenwell and Mr. Moigis. They are the right choice for school trustee.

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