Candidate Profiles: WLC School District

  • Wilton-Lyndeborough Cooperative Middle/High School Staff photo by Ben Conant

Published: 3/11/2019 12:43:15 PM
School Board, Wilton

(two seats, three-year terms)

Mark Legere

(did not respond to request for profile)

Tiffany Cloutier-Cabral 

Age: 37

Years in town: 9

Previous Elected Office: None

Other Qualifications: I have volunteered on the FRES PTO from 2011 to 2017 and the WLC PTO since 2012. I work as a lead residential counselor at Crotched Mountain Foundation. I received a degree in medical assisting from Hesser College, studied Psychology at SNHU and am currently working on an additional degree in Healthcare and Business Management at SNHU. I am also the mother of four teenage boys who attend WLC.

Issues: Since living in Wilton I have watched FRES blossom into an admirable education center. It has been exciting to see the changes and experience the effects directly. LCS has also grown as an early education school for both towns. This year a new full-day kindergarten program has operated with great success. WLC, where my boys attend now has some of the best teachers I have had the pleasure to know. The Principal, Mr. Bagley and Vice Principal, Sarah Edmands are very dedicated to our students. I call WLC "The Little School that Could" because with support, our school has great potential. My oldest son is graduating with high honors this year and he has been offered two presidential scholarships. He credits his teachers who encouraged him to enroll in honors classes when he was in Middle School and his High School teachers who continue to challenge and support him. My younger sons, twins who are in eighth grade and my youngest in seventh grade are receiving that same early encouragement from those same teachers. That is why it disheartens me that so many families worry that their children will miss opportunities in this district. Some parents consider moving while others tour local public schools and are prepared to pay out-of-town tuition. Recent missteps have shaken the faith in this community and for that enrollment has suffered. Our district's per-pupil tuition costs are higher than the NH average which is largely due to a lower student population. My intention is to help to restore faith in this district as a member of the school board working together with this great community. I appreciate and am energized by the support I have received so far. 

 

Harry Dailey

Age: 58

Years living in town: 34

Previous elected office: WLC School Board for 11 years, the last 2 as Chairman and 5 years prior to that as Vice-Chairman.

Other qualifications: I have served for the last 4 years on the Wilton Budget Committee the last 2 as Vice-Chairman.

Issues: The number one issue that is facing the WLC School District is how to provide a high-quality education with finite financial resources and declining enrollment. I think that we have made several strides in this area, one of which is approving full-day kindergarten, which should lead to cost avoidance in the future with less need for special services in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade levels. Full day kindergarten has also shown an increase in enrollment over previous kindergarten classes which hopefully will lead to larger enrollment in future grades without significant cost increases. We also provide the ability for high school students to dual- enroll in Community College classes at the same time that they are enrolled at WLC, in order to fulfill their high school requirements and receive college credits, simultaneously. The District still has a lot of work to do in order to solve these complex and difficult issues. I feel that I have the experience, passion and dedication in order to continue to move the WLC School District into the future.

School Board, Lyndeborough at-large

(Three-year term)

Charlie Post

(did not respond to request for profile)

John Clark

Age: 35

Years living in town: 5

Previous elected office held: None

Other qualifications: I have spent the past 12 years problem solving in the ever-evolving high-tech industry. I have had to accurately analyze data at hand while building bridges and consensus even when tensions and tempers are high. My background, while not bureaucratic, readily applies to the sort of challenges facing our School Board.

What are two issues you think are important and how would you address them?

As a parent of a second grader at FRES, I’ve seen first hand the power of a positive education and enthusiastic educators. It is critical that we continue to improve our district and ensure the Middle and High Schools experience the same renaissance. As a School Board member I will do everything I can to empower that process. We must deliver a quality education to all of our children without putting an unreasonable burden on the taxpayers. Ensuring our taxes are efficiently spent is key to meeting both of those needs.

Each parent and community member’s voice, concerns and opinions must be heard and is absolutely necessary for the vital community act of public education. As a School Board member I will use my knowledge and experience of technology to ensure that the School District engages with every interested citizen (and hopefully interest even more!). We need to make decision-making transparent, avoid surprising our community members and elicit opinions whenever possible. Every child and every voice matters and we need to do better job in ensuring that everyone is part of the conversation, however they choose to engage in it.

School Budget Committee, Lyndeborough at-large

(Three-year term)

Pamela Altner

(did not respond to request for profile)

Adam Lavallee

Age: 40

Years living in town: 18

Previous elected office held: None

Other qualifications: Spend management is what I do for a living. This includes spend analytics, contract negotiation and contract management.

What are two issues you think are important and how would you address them?: 1) When the school budget was decided upon this year, there was no real discussion or negotiation with the school board. The school submitted their desired budget, the budget committee looked at it and decided to approve a number approximately $160,000 lower but gave no indication as to where they thought the requested budget had unnecessary spend. When the school board inquired, the budget committee told them to get creative and that they would not be making recommendations. The school board agreed the negotiation last year, where line items were discussed/negotiated with the budget committee were so contentious, they had no desire to participate again. This left the public uninformed about the impact the approved budget would have on the school and its students. The two biggest problems with this are: Lack of ability or willingness to properly communicate and negotiate with the school board and a lack of accountability with the public on the impact of their recommended budget. I feel my experience negotiating and analyzing spend will provide a new voice so we explain the decision and position of the committee, plainly for the public and school board to understand allowing proper well informed negotiations and decisions. The budget committee has said several times that the school board doesn’t listen when we tell them where we feel they are over-spending. A negotiation is not one side telling another what needs to be done, neither is not communicating at all.


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