The current Linwood Board of Education displays a lack of transparency and unwillingness to address ongoing community concerns.
Linwood deserves a BOE directly represented by those the community selects, not a board made up only of those with close ties to the mayor. The current board has no minorities, no one who hasn’t lived in the community for less than a decade, and no parents of special needs children currently enrolled in the school system.
Most Linwood residents have endured massive property tax increases recently only to be rewarded with special needs educators leaving the system, class sizes dramatically increasing and school rankings dropping significantly. The Linwood news stories over the past few years show evidence of this decline. The mayor and BOE have yet to openly acknowledge these issues or demonstrate they are working to improve them.
Additionally, during the past three years we've had multiple superintendents, unplanned retirements of key personnel, extremely low teacher morale, and an elimination of teachers, programs and extracurricular activities. Most of our efforts to reach out to the Linwood Board of Education are met with silence.
Is it any wonder that a proposition to replace the current board with a more transparent, representational and accountable elected body was proposed by the residents?
The 12 New Jersey school districts that most recently switched from appointed to elected boards did so for one reason: accountability to the voters. Linwood residents deserve a voice in how their interests and that of the community are represented.
Luis Anthony Gaud