Please join me in electing Kevin Babbitt and Inga Koeppe, and re-electing Greg Baileynumbers 2, 3, and 4to the board of education on April 17, 2012.Please also join me in voting yes to our school budget.Here are a few of my reasons why.
A board of education must work together, with trust and respect, to accomplish its mission.John Aiello is claiming credit for finally offering full-day kindergarten in our schools.He does not deserve it.I endured Mr. Aiello as a fellow board member.I can state unequivocally that no one person in West Milford is more responsible for NOT being able to add full-day kindergarten to the curriculum than John Aiello.Mr. Aiello refused to participate in creating board goals, refused to support them when presented, and actively worked against them because they were not his idea.Mr. Aiello readily acknowledged that he couldnt understand the budget and rejected many offers of education to enable him to review it.That ignorance never stopped Mr. Aiello from undermining the administration and making unsupported claims of hidden money and agendas.None of his nonsense was ever productive.Remember lemonade with honey and baking our own bread?Enough.We need a board of education of which we can be proud, one that embodies the values that we want our students to acquire – diligence, focus, trust and respect.Koeppe, Babbitt and Bailey will achieve that goal.
A board of education is about our children; a balanced and well-represented board should include parents of children in the district.Did you realize that of the nine current board members, only two have children that are students in the district?We need more parents to be involved, be aware, and show the children that the board exists for them.Inga Koeppe and Kevin Babbitt have children in the school system and will provide a balance, focus and perspective that the board of education needs.
Our school system needs to prepare our students for the global markets of the 21st century, not a return to the 1950s.Education today requires a lot more than teaching reading, writing and arithmetic and showing the kids the door. That bare-bones approach espoused by John Aiello will not prepare our students for college or the workplace.Use of computers and other technology is fundamental, and the need for more foreign language instruction may be the biggest gap in our current curriculum in New Jersey.Greg Bailey has shown consistently that he supports providing our students with the highest quality education, both in the classroom and in extracurricular activities.I know Inga Koeppe and Kevin Babbitt personally and am confident that they are similarly determined.
The budget presented is the best put-together in many years.Having possibly spent more time reviewing our school budget in the past seven years than anyone not named Wayne Gottlieb, I am very pleased to see that the primary goal of a thorough and efficient education is the clear guiding principle of the budget.Please do not confuse a possible tax increase due to the revaluation with what is a balanced and conservative budget.This years budget will provide our students what they deserve at the lowest cost that we can achieve with timely purchasing, hard-nosed negotiation, and careful analysis.It is a budget worthy of our support.
Tim Foley West Milford