To the Editor:
I write to express my enthusiastic endorsement of Annemarie Maini’s candidacy for the South Orange-Maplewood Board of Education. I am the parent of two children who have attended South Orange Country Day School (SOCDS), the exemplary preschool that Annemarie has owned and directed for eight years. Her knowledge of and commitment to educating the whole child is only one of many reasons she will be a welcome addition to our Board of Education.
When I think about the values that I want represented on our school board, I immediately think about the type of education that Annemarie infuses into the learning environment at SOCDS. Thanks to Annemarie’s leadership, the classroom interactions and curriculum help children effectively deal with inter-personal conflict and manage their developing emotional lives – a social-emotional approach to learning that as a child psychologist I truly value and endorse. There is also a focus on academic excellence and creating a sense of community among the diverse children and families at the school. This mirrors the approach I’d want to see embodied in our district.
In addition to her educational vision and leadership qualities, Annemarie has the skills and experience to back it up: she has multiple degrees in math education, which she topped off with an MBA from Cornell. She parlayed that MBA into a banking career at JP Morgan Chase before returning to her education roots at SOCDS. Annemarie has also been a big contributor to our schools and community as a tireless volunteer.
Annemarie has a compelling vision of excellence and achievement for all of our students. But vision only gets us half way there. At SOCDS, Annemarie demonstrated that she knows how to realize that vision. Ask the hundreds of parents whose children have benefited from that wonderful preschool experience. We are thrilled that she is willing to take on the huge commitment of time and energy that service on our Board of Education entails.
Please join me in supporting Annemarie Maini for Board of Education.
Eric Schleifer, PhD