Letters: Weigh board options carefully

To The Editor:

As a current Unionville Chadds Ford school board director I’m asking the public to carefully weigh their choices in the upcoming UCF school board election.  The candidates who will continue the positive behavior of the past two years are Rob MacPherson (East & West Marlborough) and the trio of Timotha Trigg, Frank Murphy and Sharon Jones (Chadds Ford, Pennsbury).

In contrast, their opponents have shown a disregard for the public voice and an ease in spending your tax dollars as evidenced by their support of the expansive high school addition with under-the-cap financing.  If past behavior is any indication of future behavior, these free spending candidates would return to the we-know-best ways of the past.

There has been a remarkable, positive change in school board behavior over the last 2 years.  I’d like to keep it that way.  No longer do we have a board that ignores the public voice as was previously evident with the high school project.  Board deliberations are conducted in open session with pertinent documents easily accessible on the District’s web site.  Public comment is welcomed and encouraged.  An excellent replacement for our retiring superintendent was selected with public involvement.

No longer do we have a sky’s-the-limit spending attitude. A modest contract has been negotiated with the teachers which includes a one-year wage freeze.  Cost reductions in transportation and maintenance services have been implemented.  Tax increases have been kept at or below the Act 1 Index for the past 2 years in contrast with previous behavior.  All this has been done while maintaining excellent academic performance as shown by our recent PSSA and SAT scores.

Please allow us to continue our sound educational and fiscal policies by electing MacPherson (East and West Marlborough), and the trio of Trigg, Murphy and Jones (Chadds Ford, Pennsbury) this November.

For clarity, these are my personal views and may or may not represent the views of other school board members.

Keith Knauss

East Marlborough

UCF School Director

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One Comment

  1. Anne Thomas says:

    Another election season, another tumultuous school board election for UCFSD. As a parent who has had three children graduate from this school system, I do feel a responsibility to become educated and to vote for my school board director. However, in the current climate of heated rhetoric, I simply couldn’t decide what or who to believe. I see value in investing in our school system, but certainly have no desire to elect a spendthrift board who will throw tax dollars around with no regard to actual improvement. I decided to ask those whom I know to be most familiar with what is happening in the schools today. I asked current staff members who live in my area, retired staff members and, mostly, the volunteers who spend time in the schools every day, donating time and money to the communal cause of education. I expected some degree of variability in the responses, but I was AMAZED that there was not a single vote of support for an incumbent in a contested race. The feeling I got was that there is an adversarial relationship between those “in the trenches” and the Board members. This is not a recipe for success. Deserved or not, this type of reputation will not help our community or our children. We all want the most efficient use of our tax dollars, but if the Board members cannot get the support of the parents and staff, efficiency will remain a pipe dream. I believe it is time to end the acrimony, and to move our district forward in this new economy, with respect for both the sacrifices of the taxpayers and the efforts of our teachers and children. I will vote for a change this fall, with the hope that new blood will foster new ideas.

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