The last attempt to change the Linwood Board of Education from a Type 1 school district to a Type 2 school district was 1958. The people of Linwood didn’t think it was a good idea then and I don’t think of it as a better alternative now.
True, much has changed in 58 years. The city has grown and the attendant services required have grown as well. The county, city and whole area face economic challenges as Atlantic City casinos contract. Foreclosures have diminished the tax base and Linwood along with everyone has to deal with that and the consequent shrinking revenue. However, in the face of these real problems, I am lost trying to understand how changing the makeup of the school board will have a positive impact on any of them. This seems to me a solution in search of a problem.
It is hard to make an argument that Linwood has not been served well over the years by having an appointed board of education. Our schools are generally recognized as being a cut above and the results from standardized testing support that position. I think it is even harder to assert that the individuals who serve the Board of Education are not and have not been qualified.
Linwood is fortunate to have a ready supply of able citizens willing to participate on this board as well as the other boards that make up city governance. The names of board members are posted on the city website. (Vacancies are noted there as well for anyone interested in putting forth their name.)
Anyone embracing the fanciful notion that elections produce better more deserving candidates need only look at the present presidential election. That should dispel any such misguided idea.
Neither form guarantees better candidates; however, the current system has served Linwood well over time. Absent a compelling argument to the contrary, vote no on Linwood’s public question asking to change our Board of Education.