I write to support Donna Smith‘s candidacy for the School Board in the upcoming November election. With Donna, what we get is Leadership, Experience and Balance. A long-time South Orange resident, her three children went through the public schools in our District. Over a 15-year period she has been active in the PTA, so she has long-term “boots on the ground” experience with curriculum, teachers, and administrators. She has held leadership roles as Co-President of the South Mountain PTA and Co-President of the PTA Presidents Council.
Most importantly for a prospective Board Member, Donna has a keen sense that our financial resources must be spent wisely. For example, she was instrumental in orchestrating citizen resistance to the BOE’s ill-considered proposal to build an 8 million dollar swimming complex at Columbia High School. Her opposition to that proposal was based not on the notion that the pool was a terrible idea in and of itself, but rather that it was a luxury that our communities could not afford. Donna is about balanced priorities. She will insist that spending on new and previously approved initiatives be measured against objective and measureable benchmarks of success.
Donna believes in expanding the range of educational opportunity for all students within the context of budget constraints. For examples, she wants to make sure that no willing and capable student is excluded from honors or advanced classes by artificial or bureaucratic barriers.
I urge citizens to vote for Donna Smith on November 4.