To the Editors:
I’m writing in support of Board of Education candidate Shannon Cuttle. Many of the frustrations currently being voiced about our schools are rooted in a need to improve the climate and culture in our district. SOMSD must embrace a climate and culture that makes ALL students feel welcomed and safe – valued as individuals and learners. This is Shannon’s field of expertise – decades of experience in educational best practices to create such an environment!
Shannon is a former teacher and administrator. Since that time Shannon has specialized in the field of welcoming, safe schools, founding both the Safe Schools Action Network and National Safe Schools Day. Shannon directed anti-bullying initiatives for the District of Columbia, and was a frequently called-upon expert on educational policy issues in the DC area, including working with Congress and the Obama Administration. Shannon came to NJ as the Managing Director of Garden State Equality, leading the way on youth and schools initiatives, and then moved into private consulting.
Shannon was instrumental in crafting NJ’s HIB law and has worked with several state legislators on numerous educational and diversity issues. Shannon has worked locally with municipal leadership to advise them on ways to better support diverse youth and adults in Maplewood and South Orange. Shannon has also become a resource for SOMA families facing diversity issues in our schools or community who have been unable to find support elsewhere.
The Board of Education would greatly benefit from Shannon’s expertise and proven ability to work with people of different viewpoints, achieve consensus and take meaningful action to create a climate where all students can reach their full potential. Please join me in voting for Shannon Cuttle on November 7th .