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In Your Opinion: School District Needs Richard Seamon

By John Felix, Somerset.

During the past 14 years I’ve been a keen observer of the Franklin Township Board of Education (BOE), as well as a steady advocate for student academic achievement and active parent engagement. Although this period has been marked with measurable BOE successes, it has also been an era of acrimony and division among BOE officers and between BOE leadership and central office administrators. Sadly these acrimonies have been completely unnecessary and resulted in missed opportunities and non-productivity. Above the fray of the rancor was an experienced distinguished BOE officer and longtime township resident, Mr. Richard Seamon.

Mr. Seamon, who currently occupies a BOE vacated seat and is a candidate for the upcoming BOE elections, is a previous Board officer (2000 – 2003 & 2010 – 2013) whose service to our public school students has been and continues to be exemplary. During his productive tenure on the Board, Mr. Seamon chaired both the Facilities Committee and the Strategic Planning Committee. He also sat on the Policy Committee where he was instrumental in facilitating an agreement with his fellow board members to move important policies for successful Board approval. His stewardship of the Facilities Committee was multifaceted and resulted in key initiatives that directly impact the long term goals of the district, vis-à-vis to improve student academic growth and narrow, if not eliminate, the achievement gap. The successful passage of last December’s “One Less Move” referendum was a direct consequence of Mr. Seamon’s previous work on the Board. His steady, calm, deliberative and balanced leadership as a BOE officer commanded the respect and admiration of all stakeholders including fellow Board officers, professional educational leaders at the central office and parents.

Needless to say, my avid support for Mr. Seamon is predicated on observations of his tenure on the Board, his acumens, his attention to details and his responsiveness to issues of importance to student academic growth. Over the years, my many conversations with Richard have allowed me conclude that he is a thoughtful, rational leader with great integrity, whose genuine dedication to our public school system is unwavering and not motivated by self-interest or ego. He is truly a committed public servant whose actions represent the best characteristics of a dedicated BOE officer that embodies the mission of the Franklin Township Public Schools of providing “excellent educational opportunities for every student.” Additionally, his multi-year involvement with the Franklin Township Soccer Club is a testament of his civic-mindedness and community outreach. I applaud Mr. Seamon for his steadfast service to our children, both in and out of school.

Please join me in assuring the success of our public schools, and the continuance of an effective BOE by supporting Richard Seamon in the November 3rd BOE elections.

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