Election Maplewood Opinion Schools / Kids South Orange

Letter: Malespina Understands Teaching, Education Policy, the Budget Process

Six candidates have filed to run for election to the 9-member South Orange-Maplewood Board of Education on November 3, 2020. Five people are vying for three full-term (3-year) open seats, while one incumbent, Kamal Zubieta, is running to complete the remainder of a term. Village Green is posting letters in support of local candidates campaigning for election. If you wish to submit a letter, read Village Green’s Election Guidelines here.

Elissa Malespina

Dear Editor:

Our schools are so important; they educate our children, this nation’s future leaders, and they account for about 60% of our property taxes, and play an outsize role in our properties’ values. Elissa Malespina understands teaching, learning, and education policy, and the budget process. She is a 20-year public school teacher, and librarian. As a parent, educator and involved citizen, she will put her knowledge and skills to work for us all. Elissa knows the questions to ask, and will be a good watchdog, which is needed on the BOE to make sure our taxes are spent wisely and well, again, for our children and future leaders.

Elissa Malespina and I have known each other for years. Elissa has always been actively involved in the community as a volunteer. I got to know Elissa when she took the lead in advocating for the beautification of the South Orange downtown and helped to secure funds to make that happen. From helping with Board of Trustee campaigns to ensure good government and being on South Orange’s Recreation Advisory Board and the South Orange Library Board of Trustees, Elissa has always made time to serve her community. She is currently the Education Liaison for the Academy Heights Neighborhood Association and is a member of the Founders Park Conservancy. I have had the pleasure of working with her on many civic projects throughout the years, and I always know that I can count on her to help.

I enthusiastically endorse Elissa Malespina for SOMSD Board of Education (BOE).

Janine Bauer
South Orange, NJ

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