Quiz The Board Of Ed Candidates

This year’s Board of Education campaign hasn’t gotten a lot of press.  The Planning and Zoning race — that’s where it’s at.

But the Board of Ed is important.  It’s the biggest part by far of the town budget, as we all know.

Still, it takes an involved citizen to sift through position papers, and listen to board candidates natter on about ERGs, CAPTs and whatnot.

If you want to know more, though, there’s one event you shouldn’t miss.

It’s this Wednesday (November 2, 7-9 p.m., Staples High School library).

It’s a “forum” — not a debate — and even better, it’s sponsored by an organization that has a true stake in this election:  Staples Student Assembly.

Someone who’s been to a past forum calls it “the most interesting” pre-election session.

“Others are scripted and boring,” this education-watcher says.

“At Staples they asked about teaching intelligent design, open campus and other good topics.”

Herman Cain is not on the Westport Board of Ed ballot.  But — if we’re lucky — a high school student or two might come up with questions that elicit Cain-like answers that reveal something fascinating about this year’s candidates.

For better, or worse.

42 responses to “Quiz The Board Of Ed Candidates

  1. Here’s the debate: “We need more money for our precious kids.” No, we need more and more money for our precious kids.” “No, I of course disagree, it’s not about money, it’s about more money for our precious kids.”

    • You hit the nail on the head, but you left out the part about the need for no oversight on how the money is spent, and no metrics for measuring the outcomes.

  2. Yeah more money so they can go to 3rd tier overpriced colleges and then come home to live with Mommy and Daddy with their student loans looming if they do get a job.

  3. They can camp out in the street demanding that someone else pay off their loans; that might work.

  4. Richard Lawrence Stein

    Wow alot of anger, resentment, and bitterness I am detecting. Good thing the students are busy with research projects, helping the soldiers, helping the Gillespie Center, being decent human beings, and oh yeah cheering on their winning sports teams to be bothered by your assuming comments….

    • I would assume most of Staples “specials” are nursing hangovers today after Homecoming. At least they were hiding their flasks at the football game.

      • Richard Lawrence Stein

        So Bra I guess you throw babies out with bath water and toss all the apples out because the one was bad…. Not all who were there drank or had been drinking I’m sure… Between my four siblings and myself and many of our friends we went to homecoming and never touched a drop… That covers decades…

      • actually with the inclement weather, the vast majority of us Staples “specials,” as you put, it stayed in and bundled up because of no power… Your vast generalization just makes you sound like an ignorant old curmudgeon

        • I would rather be an old curmudgeon than a whimp who tends to use bigger words than his britches. Oh forgot, you don’t wear belts anymore.

  5. The Dude Abides

    The vast majority of Staples kids have been drinking at Homecoming, either before, after or during since the 1960’s. I know my class did. You were/are looking the other way RLS. And wasn’t it you that joked with the Professor about drinking at the Candlelight Service and there wasn’t anything one could do about it “because drinking had gone on for generations here.”

    • Richard Lawrence Stein

      Dude I’m not looking the other way and I don’t have my eyes closed…. As a matter of fact my my class year 86 was one of the worse on record…. Drinking car accidents… Powder puff made the NYT for it’s bad behavior… But I don’t agree with all these kids are awful and bad…. That seems to be implied… Just because some ruin it for others does not seem to be fair to those that are stand up

      • The Dude Abides

        Hey, RLS, don’t get me wrong. All these kids are good kids. Some misdirected, however, as to what constitutes a good time. But I used to make the Vista runs for lunch but it caught up with me with 6 years in the military including a tour of ‘Nam. As a result, I think they need to crack the whip on drinking. Big time. And I don’t think that is happening with the present administration.

        • Richard Lawrence Stein

          I don’t totally disagree Dude… But as do you and I we have tales to tell… Some good some bad but learning experiences none the less… Times are different in many ways… But let’s not fish with a net unless it is called for

          • The Dude Abides

            If they are different, RLS, why are the kids doing the same things we did 45 years ago??? The surprise and shock (and hurt) comes when they go off to college and find that those administrations do not look the other way.

            • Richard Lawrence Stein

              The things they are doing aren’t different but the consequences and legality are plus the amount of parental intervention ala helicoptering is much more prevalent than when you or myself grew up in lovely Westport town

              • The Dude Abides

                But my point is that they looked the other way then as they do now. I mentioned in a past exchange of a lovely Staples graduate (who drank in high school to her parents knowledge) and was booted from college first semester for underage drinking. Devastating to the kid. But both parents quit drinking and she took some local courses and is back on her feet. The lesson should have been learned in high school.

    • Dude, “the vast majority of Staples kids” were not drinking at Homecoming when I was at Staples. It wasn’t a problem.

      • The Dude Abides

        Was there 18 year old drinking in New York then, Fred???

        • Richard Lawrence Stein

          The drinking age changed in NYS around 1984. 1985

        • The Dude Abides

          Well, Fred, drinking was the drug of choice in the ’60’s and it was the majority. We lost 7 kids our senior year. By the early 70’s, perhaps other drugs had replaced booze?

          • Dude, I was at Staples for Homecoming in 68-70. I’m not saying there weren’t kids who headed down to Port Chester. All I’m saying is that the vast majority of kids weren’t drinking at Homecoming, nor were the vast majority even drinking at the parties I went to. (Athletic code was being observed.)

  6. As someone who participated in motorcade and homecoming this year, it was safer than normal. Half the kids were not drinking at all and the drinking that was done was safe. Designated drivers, reasonable amounts, etc. Two years ago was awful, and last year was progress, but this year people took safety more seriously. And very few kids actually brought flasks in. (I was not drinking but have friends who participated.)

    • I thought the drinking age in this state is 21. It seems that laws were broken. But these students are special right? The laws don’t apply to them.

      • I suppose you have never ever driven above the speed limit, right? Anyways, that is another generalization – it isn’t that Westport teens drink at any significantly higher rate than in other places across the country or even the world. We don’t think we are special in breaking this law at all. I have friends who live in Europe where the drinking age is 18 – and therefore started drinking three or four years earlier. This typical behavior should neither be condoned nor condemned. It is just a fact of life that some people will make their own decisions.

        • Justin O'Reilly.

          Feeble childish reply, Senior Girl.

          • I’m sorry. Did I say something untrue? Unintelligent? Do you have any specific constructive criticism or are you just trolling? I appreciate debate in conversation but that remark seems rather thoughtless.

            • Your whole premise is that other kids do it, either in Europe or here so why the fuss? People speed, talk on cell phones while driving so why not underage drinking? I am not preaching non-drinking but it does not belong around school functions. Period.

              • Not why the fuss. I understand why the fuss. Its dangerous and illegal. I just think its hard to control and at traditionally booze-filled events, we did a pretty good job of keeping things under control and not embarrassing ourselves. The change in the Board of Ed will not stop this or effect this in any way.

    • I will note that i actually know of a very small minority of students who drank for homecoming. two years ago was an embarressment and our senior class was not going to make fools of ourselves and follow suit.

  7. Westportersince1970

    So let’s see…
    The point of running for election to the Westport Board of Education is being questioned because:
    (a) a good k-12 education doesn’t pay off in a job in an economy where the financial industry has sucked the job market dry
    (b) students model their parents and their predecessors and drink a lot of alcohol
    (c) the “administration” is not doing the job parents used to do.
    (d) Everybody participating in Occupy Wallstreet is from Westport… oh, er. just like everybody from Westport… uh, might as well be from Westport… Might wanna be from Westport if they cared about Westport.

    Lots of lucid commentary on this one, Dan.

    • I have no control over my commenters! This discussion did go in a far different direction than I expected, that’s for sure.

    • Aren’t you the guy who ratted out Jeffxs??? Giving his name/address out on this blog. Your analysis is tainted if not moronic.

      • Westportersince1970

        Not me, CAS, Carl Addison Swanson, aka the Dude

        “Westporter | October 28, 2010 at 12:36 am | Reply

        After watching Jeffxs attack Brian Hershey I believe it is important the Westport community understand that Jeffxs is Michael Petrino of Westport, CT. It takes little more than a Google search to determine this. Young scholars like Brian should not be subject to such anonymous attacks, regardless of their professionalism and grace. This should at least curb the anonymity.”

        You’re talking to yourself too much. You’ll drive yourself nuts.

  8. Virginia Gilbertie

    I heard one good idea relevant to the board of ed – increase the oversight of how our money is spent. Hooray for transparency. Did anyone say “Citizen’s Independent Oversight Committee”?

  9. John Adams III

    Just what America and Westport needs is another committee. We need less people in charge or supervising to get anything done.

    • Virginia Gilbertie

      John, the main complaint seems to be that the Board of Ed spends copious amounts of money and we don’t know where it’s going. What is your suggestion for bringing in more transparency?

  10. I do regret that this is scheduled at the same date/time as the “Y Property Q And A” though. I’d have liked to attend both.

  11. Brett Aronow, PTA Council Co-President

    For everyone that commented above I think you should probably attend the forum on Thursday, Nov. 10th where we will discuss the results of the survey on Westport Students. As we know from the survey, drinking alcohol, using drugs, cheating, etc. are facts. If we think this is a problem, then he real question is what as a community (not just the school and the parents) are we going to do to solve the problem. The survey results will be discussed on Nov. 10th 7:30-9:00pm in Town Hall. There will be a panel represented by a number of organizations that make up our Positive Youth Development organization in town. We hope that parents, students and members of the community can all come together and have a more productive discussion.