Letter: Haldane Board Write-In Candidate

Sandy McKelvey (file photo)

I am running for the Haldane school board as a write-in candidate on Tuesday, May 16.

I am running because I believe Haldane needs to be a much more open and transparent district. Like many people in the community, I have questions and concerns about decisions made by the superintendent and school board and feel that we deserve better answers. Basic trust between the community and the school leadership is breaking down.

The superintendent and the board have not sufficiently communicated with parents and taxpayers. Announcements have been vague and poorly timed, resulting in a community filled with skepticism and an environment of rumors and ugly gossip.

Haldane has the potential to be a much stronger and unified district if the community felt more welcomed and included. As a board member, I would reach out and listen to the ideas and concerns of the community through open dialogue with community members in person on a regular basis. I could be available for informal chats on the blacktop after school once a month, for example.

I would also reach out to Haldane faculty, staff and students to get a sense of how we are doing and how we can do better. Perhaps occasionally we could move our meetings to another venue in town to make it more accessible.

I would try my best to answer everyone’s questions and concerns and give thorough explanations as to why some things need to be kept confidential in order to protect the people involved. Certain topics discussed in executive session cannot be revealed until the issues are resolved pursuant to New York State law. I would be clear and up front when those issues come up.

Among my qualifications:

  • I have volunteered for eight years at Haldane elementary and middle schools and have a son in elementary school and a daughter in middle school.
  • I have been an active member of the Haldane Wellness Committee for the past eight years.
  • I developed and implemented Haldane’s Farm to School Initiative, which now reaches every elementary and middle school student.
  • I know most of the elementary and middle school teachers, and I am familiar with the curriculum and the changes that have been implemented during the past eight years.
  • I participated in developing Haldane’s current five-year strategic plan.
  • I ran my own business for 30 years. I understand budgets and planning and implementing long-term projects.
  • I am a good listener and communicator.
  • I am open-minded and thoughtful in my decision-making.

Cold Spring is an extraordinary community with people of many skills, talents and passions. I am passionate about making Haldane a school that is as remarkable as the community it serves. Anyone with questions may email me at [email protected].

Sandy McKelvey, Cold Spring

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