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Letter to the Editor: In Support of Suzanne Sack for RSD 17 Board of Education

The views stated here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the editors of this newspaper. We welcome supporting or opposing views on any published item. Received September 25, 2023.

With over 1800 Killingworth children affected and over $45mm dollars spent each year, RSD 17 needs strong leadership and a generous commitment of time from Regional School District 17 Board of Education Board members. We have accomplished much over the last eight years. There is still much to do and that is why I am running for a third term on the Board of Education.

My name is Suzanne Sack. I am currently the Chair of RSD17 Board of Education and during my tenure, the district faced many challenges. The Board provided community leadership with meaningful results:

First, RSD17 has achieved many milestones in academic achievement and awards of distinction. The most recent being that our elementary schools received “Top 10 State Schools of Distinction” for academic growth. This was accomplished after the COVID 19 school shutdown; many other schools were reporting meaningful learning and socialization loss at this crucial educational stage. This accomplishment is due in large measure to the teamwork of our staff, parents, students, and the RSD17 Board of Education. The Board distinguished itself by keeping schools fully open as soon as the State Department of Health allowed us to do so – many other districts did not. While in retrospect, this was an excellent decision for our students, at the time, there was worry about the “unknown” and uncertainty about what to do. It is during these difficult times, that leadership makes a difference.

Second, RSD17 enjoys bragging rights for many more academic and athletic accomplishments – all while maintaining one of the lower costs per pupil in the state. Except for the most recent years of significant inflation, the Killingworth community has enjoyed world class education for its children at a modest cost increase each year – meaning little to no tax increases for Killingworth taxpayers.

Third, to sustain all its successes, RSD17’s Board delivered a strategic plan to emphasize:

  • Student academic achievement and well being
  • Leadership and staff competence and capability
  • Operational efficiency and fiscal responsibility
  • School building renewal

All RSD17 personnel goals and accountabilities are linked to these strategic objectives.

Our community schools are positioned for a great future, but there is much critical work to be done within all four of our strategic objectives and the community should elect people who can contribute to the Board of Education to:

  • Create creative schools of growth
  • Make excellent, fact-based decisions
  • Create accountability to expected results
  • Leave personal agendas at home and lead through the strategic plan

I will be forever grateful for my public education; I attended it through my undergraduate degree, and it gave me a path to the future. I was able to acquire a master’s degree from Columbia University, marry my husband of 35 years, build a career in financial services, and live a fulfilled life in the beauty of Killingworth.

My “pay it forward” is my service on the Board of Education. I believed I’ve served honorably for my first two terms and would be honored to do it for another. Please vote on Tuesday, November 7th.

Suzanne Sack, Killingworth

Suzanne Sack is Chair of the RSD 17 Board of Education

 

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