For the kids: The goal of the School Committee must be to make equality of opportunity, academic excellence and student safety Job 1, for every child. Our focus needs to be on rigorously preparing all of our children for the complex, diverse, technical, and competitive world that awaits them. It starts with allowing our wonderful educators to do what they do best—teaching. That effort cannot and should not sugarcoat the intolerance and injustices of the past or exclude particular points of view. At the same time, it must bring students together, emphasize achievement for all, and avoid the divisive political agendas that foster division and
threaten the safe learning environment that we want and need for our children. I seek to get politics out of the School Committee.
Just a few short years ago, Wellesley Public Schools were well known and celebrated for academic rigor and the fostering of critical thinking. In 2014, our High School ranked #4 in the Commonwealth. Today, sadly, we have seen that ranking drop steadily and precipitously to #26. The Middle School ranks even lower, suggesting further decline ahead. Our kids deserve better.
For the parents: Parents deserve transparency from the Committee. Too often, the Committee and Administration are clearly dismissive of the legitimate concerns raised by parents on a host of issues ranging from curriculum to invasive surveys to charging exorbitant sums for public records. The Committee needs to listen and, when possible, respond to parental comment. This is evident in the chronic enrollment decline in the system. Parents are voting with their feet. No enterprise can hemorrhage customers and hope to be successful. My agenda for every meeting and office hour will include listening to parents, encouraging them to be the full participants and informed stakeholders that they deserve to be and making the work of the Committee as transparent and responsive as possible.
For the taxpayers: Did you know that our schools account for almost half of the entire Town budget? School quality is expensive, and deservedly so. That is precisely why every taxpayer in Town must demand accountability from the Committee and a businesslike approach. School quality also drives home values. We are constantly reminded of that each time we are asked for
greater investments in public education. Yet, we seem to be constantly paying more and getting less in terms of return on investment. At some point, we risk killing the “Golden Goose” and property values will decline. The schools are important to all taxpayers, regardless of whether they have direct skin in the game in the form of students. We must respect that fact and work with other Town boards to be the best possible stewards of public funds.
My background: First and foremost, I am a parent. My eldest is a proud WHS graduate. My youngest is in elementary school at Sprague. I am active in the Sprague PTO. I have proudly served in elected office in Town, being a member of the Planning Board for 5 years. I also served on the Town’s Wetlands Committee. I know how Town government works—or doesn’t—and there will be no learning curve on that score. I am an attorney, practicing in Town, specializing in environmental and land use matters. I have a lifelong commitment to education at all levels, having been a former public school teacher and then serving as an Overseer and on the Board of Trustees of the Boston Architectural College. I am pro bono counsel to the Wellesley Conservation Land Trust and I am a founding member of the group Wellesley Concerned Parents. I am a product of public school education. That strong foundation served as a springboard to an Ivy League education and has informed my efforts in life. I want the same thing for my kids and all of the children of Wellesley and I am willing to fight for it. I ask for your vote.
To join in the effort or to ask any questions, contact me a Nealforsc@gmail.com
Candidate for Wellesley School Committee
As a Wellesley resident, I feel we need some new blood for our school committee. Our school academic performance is sinking in the past few years. I remember when I moved into Wellesley, Wellesley school ranking is always among the top 5 in US news ranking for MA. Last year, it ranked 20th+. Wellesley spent much more $ per student than the 90+% of the other towns which have better academic performance in MCAS. From my personal experience in the school for my kid, I feel the school is NOT value academic education at all. Its only focus is DEI and to turned every language class into a DEI class using inappropriate teaching material, which does not teach kids anything about grammar, important vocabulary, composing a beautiful article etc. It’s more about indoctorate some political belief than teaching valuable academic knowledge. Can our kids get a job in the future and compete globally with kids in other countries who study hard-core technology by just talking about DEI? To say the least, I am very confused about the school focus as a parent.
It will be very helpful to have some school committee member whose kids are in the school system so they are NOT OUT of TOUCH about what’s really happening in our school. As a parent, I wish the school will return to academic rigor, increase AP classes, strengthen Math/Language education, put our kids’ best interest as the first priority, and focus the resources on academic performance, and make the right CHANGE!
I agree with both Emily and Loretta’s comments. The town, our schools, parents and students are very fortunate that someone like Neal is running for SC. He has my vote for sure.
I think you nailed a lot of the issues parents are frustrated with. When we choose our next School Committee candidate, we need someone who will actually hold Lussier accountable and make sure that our tax dollars are spent properly.
As our enrollment drops, our per pupil costs keep going up and our school budget increases every year, leading to tax hikes.
At the same time, our school rankings keep dropping and year after year, it’s more excuses like “test scores don’t matter” and
“everything is fine”. Did you know that the school spent almost $1 million dollars alone just on DEI professional development sessions this past year and is asking for the same amount for this new budget?
School rankings are a metric measured across all schools and anytime a school drops from #4 to #26, there is problem. You can’t just say the huge drop doesn’t matter and refuse to explain why. I think parents are just too busy in their lives to see what is going on, but we need to pay attention.
It is time for a change. Good Luck, Neal. You have my vote.
Loretta Carranza says
The purpose of school is to learn and the role of teachers is to instruct. Let’s leave politics and social theories out of the equation. Before voting for the next school committee member ask yourself several questions. Are the Wellesley Schools still the same caliber as when you first chose to make Wellesley your home? Are your taxes commensurate with the current school rankings? Are your children receiving the education they deserve? If you answered no to any or all of these questions please vote for Neal to take back control of our schools and the future of our children. I am confident he is the change agent we need to ensure we return to the live in-person model where parents are involved in school committee decisions.
Dario Fauza says
Mr. Glick’s candidacy for the School Committee is a breath of fresh air. He represents sorely needed change and opposition to the cronyism that has taken hold in our school system. Such cronyism has been largely fueled and supported by unions and other interests that are essentially oblivious to our kids’ and town’s own interests. I invite those of you who have not been following our school system as of late to become acquainted with what has been happening, since well before the pandemic. The continuing deterioration of our academic standards and of our schools’ ambiance is quite obvious. Just look at the enrollment numbers, only to mention one evidence of this regrettable state of affairs. Or look at the history of our MCAS performance, to mention another. Even the realm of police records involving student violence has started to add up to such evidences (!). All that information is available to anyone who wants to see it. Indeed, this is relevant to all Wellesley citizens, regardless of whether they currently have children in our public schools, or not, among other reasons because property values track school quality. The latter is not only neglected, but actually under attack. A well organized and centrally controlled form of attack, seen almost all across the country, serving other interests that have no place in our town. Should we not be able to start rescuing our schools, the consequences will be dire and long lasting, if not permanent.
As a widowed mom with 2 children I moved to Wellesley in 1984 for the outstanding public school education this town offered. There was an understanding between teachers and parents that our children deserved the broad and in-depth education that an increasing globalization required and the intellectual challenges that roused their curiosity and desire to learn and, ultimately, succeed to find their place in the world. To that end parents and teachers collaborated in devising curricula and inspiring each student to achieve his or her greatest fulfillment. My daughters and I will forever be grateful for having grown up in this town of nurturing and stimulating intellectualism.
At this time of unfortunate politicizing and great misguidance on how to best maximize each student’s potential, Neal Glick has the most analytical overview of what has worked for kids of all backgrounds, and the clearest vision on how to prepare todays youngsters to find their individual places in the world.
He has my whole hearted support and we will be able to count us fortunate that a person of his caliber will be looking out for our childrens’ best.
Aliana Brodmann E. von Richthofen
I was so glad to hear that Neal is running. We need new members on the school committee that will thoughtfully think about what is best for not only our school kids, but also the town and the taxpayers.
Over the past 8-9 years, we have watched our school rankings go from #4 all the way to #26. When we ask why, we are told these US news rankings don’t matter. These rankings are one type of measurement that we can use to compare ourselves to surrounding towns, so they do matter and continuing to ignore the decline does not do us any good.
As our rankings go down, our enrollment also continues to go down. Where are these students going? Why are they leaving? Does the WPS even care to find out why? Our enrollment has dropped in much higher numbers compared to similar surrounding towns.
As enrollment continues to drop, our taxes continue to go up and the school budget keeps going up. Every year. Our cost per pupil has gone up every single year, so what kind of return are we getting now?
I hope Neal Glick addresses these concerns. I want him to have a good relationship with Lussier (DL), but a good relationship does not mean he does whatever DL wants. We need accountability. We need a candidate that won’t ignore parent concerns. The other SC candidate, from what I have seen/read/heard seems to be lock step in line with whatever DL wants and that will be terrible for this town.
Good luck, Neal. You have our vote.
Joelle Reidy says
If you would like to learn more about the other SC candidate that you referenced, please visit his website http://www.Craigmackforwps.com or reach out to him directly at email@example.com. He is more than happy to address any questions or concerns that you might have and welcomes the opportunity to speak with you.
Thank you for your time.
Committee to Elect Craig Mack
Wellesley parent says
The academics at WPS have diminished noticeably over the years forcing us to pull our kids and send them to private school. It is past time for the School Committee to challenge the administration to make academics the top priority. Glad to have a candidate in Neal who doesn’t accept status quo and will hopefully help WPS return to a place where all students have the opportunity to achieve their highest potential.
Jennifer Sarabia says
If you want a representative on our school committee who wants the best for our kids and can understand the larger scope and impact of changes being made – vote for Neal.
Our schools are reacting to social and political issues. Politics has no place in our schools – especially in elementary and middle schools.
We want to research, develop plans and make intelligent changes in our schools. We need an advocate for our children. Decisions are being made out of fear without understanding the full impact these are having on our kids and families. When teachers and principals are questioned, they don’t have the right answers to why school curriculum changes are being made.
We need someone who knows the legal system and our legal rights.
I’ve known Neal a long time and he’s highly intelligent and pragmatic. He understands the “big picture”. He’s always asking questions to understand everything before making a logical decision.
Neal can be empathetic when needed, and tough when needed.
Neal is our guy!