Beacon School Board Endorsements

Editor’s note: The Beacon school district budget and trustee election is Tuesday, May 15. Polls are open at Beacon High School (for city residents) and Glenham Elemenary School (for all others) from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. There are six candidates for three open seats. The Current posed questions to each candidate, and their responses are posted here.

There are probably few people around Beacon who are not familiar with Ali Muhammad not only from his tenure on the City Council but his public service projects and initiatives: Unity in the Community conversations, Pop Warner Youth Football, Terrance Wright Memorial Basketball League, community cleanup projects in Beacon, Poughkeepsie and Newburgh, and frequent Beacon High School guest speaker.

If you know Ali at all, you know he is authentically interested and committed to the best outcome for any endeavor with which he is involved. He’s a networker who actively seeks to gather information on issues so that he may be fully informed and aware of the concerns of others.

Ali is seeking a seat on the Beacon school board on May 15. He has experience with budget management and organizing and is connected with people of virtually every demographic group in Beacon that the school board impacts — youth, parents, empty-nesters, longtime residents and those who have more recently chosen to make Beacon home. He is an accessible, sincere listener who values input and collaboration in order to have a balanced perspective.

A lifelong resident, Ali brings with him a love of our community, as well as a genuine respect for its heritage and its future. I have known Ali for many years, and as a former board member, educator and Beacon resident, I feel Ali is an ideal candidate for this position.

Betsy Denis, Beacon

Please vote in the Beacon school board election on May 15. I am supporting Christine Galbo.

Christine has been a dedicated special education teacher for more than 20 years, a former president of South Avenue PTA, and a Girl Scout leader for 11 years. She is a good listener and an independent thinker. Christine has no agenda except the best education for all students of our district. She will also make sure money is well spent. Please give Christine your support.

Randy Casale, Beacon
Casale is the city’s mayor.

Christine Galbo has been and will be a thoughtful and effective member of the Beacon school board. She is a special education teacher, a foster parent and provides learning opportunities for our youth. I trust she will be a listener to multiple viewpoints, and find ways of accommodating the better and more inclusive views.

Voters can vote for three candidates, and one of my votes will go to Christine.

Lee Kyriacou, Beacon
Kyriacou is a Beacon councilman.

As a parent with children in the Beacon school district, a former PTA president, a volunteer for Advocates for Beacon Schools and Wee Play Community Project, and a former special education teacher, I have watched the district grow and flourish with the addition of new board members, a new superintendent and an increase in parent partnerships with the schools and the community.

I believe that Elissa Betterbid, James Case-Leal and Flora Stadler will keep this momentum going by focusing on the strengths of the teachers, utilizing resources to increase student achievement and increasing stakeholder participation.

Elissa Betterbid comes to us as a mother of three children at the three building levels, as an advocate for teachers, and is someone who sees Beacon as “on the rise.”

James Case-Leal comes from a family of educators and is interested in hands-on learning. He wants to make the emotional and physical safety of students a priority.

Flora Stadler has a strong background in community service and has worked hard to create partnerships. In addition to her focus on increasing nutrition standards throughout the district, she has served on the South Avenue PTA and volunteered with Advocates for Beacon Schools and Wee Play.

Please vote for Betterbid, Case-Leal and Stadler on May 15.

Clarice Allee, Wappingers Falls

After years of involvement in the Beacon City School District, including careful attention to school board meetings and the recent meet the candidates night, I am proud and excited to endorse Elissa Betterbid, James Case-Leal and Flora Stadler for the three open board seats.

As a parent of two children in this district I am very happy with the way that things have been improving in the past couple of years, but we still have a long way to go. Elissa, James,and Flora each bring a lot to the table in terms of knowledge and skill sets.

They all got involved at different times and for different reasons, but they share a desire to do what’s best for all of Beacon’s students. They’ve all volunteered in the district, giving their time to help the students and teachers. They all believe that a school district cannot truly flourish unless every individual child in that district has the opportunity to excel in their own way, and they understand that means different things for different kids. They are also the only candidates who have been regularly attending school board meetings this past year, so they are up to date on what’s happening in the district and able to hit the ground running.

I am confidant that Elissa, James, and Flora will do a great job for our children and I am asking you to join me in voting for the three of them this Tuesday.

Jodi McCredo, Beacon
McCredo is a member of the Beacon City Council.

As a parent with a daughter who has been in the Beacon City School District over the last several years, I have watched how this district has managed to gradually pull itself out of years of dysfunction and chaos. While the BCSD still has much more work to do, the recent additions of new board members and a new superintendent have moved our district forward in the right direction.

In order to keep this positive momentum going, I urge you to cast your votes for Elissa Betterbid, James Case-Leal and Flora Stadler for the three open seats in this Tuesday’s school board elections.

In addition to having children attending schools in the BCSD, Elissa, James, and Flora are strong advocates for our students as well as our teachers. I have the utmost respect for their collective dedication and participation in our community by regularly attending school board meetings, advocating for healthier options for school lunches and organizing student-focused events such as the 4/20 Day of Action.

It is my honor to endorse Elissa Betterbid, James Case-Leal, and Flora Stadler for the Beacon City School Board. Please cast your votes for them on Tuesday, May 15.

Terry Nelson, Beacon
Nelson is a member of the Beacon City Council.

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