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New school board members ready to work

November 16, 2011

by Marissa Kilkenny

Sue Adler (?)

The city of Albany has voted, and the two new elected school board members are Ginnie Farrell and Sue Adler. After a long year of campaigning, these two winners are expected to take their places on the Albany School Board in January 2012.

Farrell and Adler have a lot they would like to accomplish. One primary point of focus is hiring a new superintendent.

“Someone that would be responsive and listen to the community,”Adler said about qualities she hopes to find in a new superintendent.

The other newest member of the board, Farrell, will be sworn in in January. She has a vision for the board: “Good leadership is essential for the future success of our schools and our children.”

Dan Egan, the president of the Albany School Board, also expressed his desire to hire a new superintendent. “We need a strong board to attract a superintendent, and now we have that.”

Both Adler and Farrell plan to focus on the same issues that compelled them to run for their two seats. One of Adler’s priorities, she said, is securing equal state funding for the district, and, closing the student achievement gap

“One of the things I would like to get accomplished, Adler said, is “more proportionate funding” One of her sons attends Albany High School, which has reported abysmal graduation rates in recent years. Children from impoverished backgrounds and children of color have the same right to graduate as every other student, she said. She hopes to identify “goals that the board, staff and citizens can all agree on.”

Ginnie Farrell (?)

Farrell, the mother of three children all in the Albany school district, is eager to get on the board and explore the benefits of technology to the district. “I’m looking forward to finding opportunities to bring people and organizations together in large and small ways to support our children,” said Farrell. “I’d like to see public documents from board meetings available online, especially in terms of the budget.”
“Each child should have a digital file that has all of their information stored on it from test scores and assessments to any write ups (positive or negative),” she said. “This would go a long way in supporting our children and would make it easier to share information about children within the district and with parents.”

Farrell, received 6,696 votes and Adler had 5,919.

“I’m grateful to the voters that they trusted enough in me and I will work very hard to live up to expectations,” said Adler.
Community participation in the voting process has been a subject of attention since the dawn of voting. Back in the Sept. 20, 1979 issue of Inscape, a publication at The College of Saint Rose, voter registration was a focal point.
“I feel good about our message and the hard work we put into the campaign and my focus is now being the best school board member I can be,” said Farrell.

NYPIRG to hold voter registration (Clip)

Like many inner-city school boards, it is a long road until all the problems are solved. Now, the new board will face them together. “The board will work as a team, probably better than in the past,” said Egan. “I couldn’t be more pleased.” -30-

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