2013-10-31 / Schools

Fankhauser, Truszkowski vie for Howell seat on board

Staff Writer

The contest for a three-year term representing Howell on the Freehold Regional High School District Board of Education will pit a recent FRHSD graduate against an attorney on Nov. 5, Election Day.

Amy Fankhauser and James Truszkowski are running for the Howell seat that is currently held by Ron Lawson.

Lawson is not seeking re-election.

Scott Moses, who filed a nominating petition, has withdrawn his name from the ballot due to personal reasons.

The FRHSD board has nine members: one representative each from Englishtown, Colts Neck, Farmingdale, Freehold Borough, Freehold Township, Manalapan and Marlboro, and two representatives from Howell. The winning candidates will begin their new terms in January,

The candidates responded to questions posed by Greater Media Newspapers.

What is your professional background and what skills do you have that you believe will add to the Board of Education?

Fankhauser: I am an attorney who graduated in the top 11 percent of my class at Seton Hall University School of Law. This shows that I take on challenges, I am a hard worker, I am well-educated, and I value education.

I am a former school board attorney. I know the school laws and regulations, and school governance. I will have little to no learning curve if elected.

I am a former attorney for the Office of Legislative Services in Trenton. I know how to read and interpret legislation and assess its impact on the school district and community.

I have been a citizen member on the Howell K-8 School District Board of Education Policy Committee since 2007. I know how to draft, interpret and apply school board policies.

Truszkowski: I am a product of the Howell K-8 School District and a graduate of the Freehold Regional High School District. I was recently a student of the district and am now a college student. I know how we can help our students because I am a student.

As the district moves forward, what do you see as the key issues and how will you work to address them?

Truszkowski: I believe our district needs to work much more closely with colleges and universities to better prepare our students, create a more efficient and up-todate curriculum for all of our students and become more accessible to our community to receive feedback. I hope to elevate the Freehold Regional High School District to a new level of excellence that will serve as a model for other schools and districts.

Fankhauser: A quality, relevant education: Students must be involved in their educational experience. I would propose naming student representatives to the school board.

Sustainable, long-range planning: This is necessary to draw residents into our communities and to enable them to reasonably plan for their own long-term future. I will analyze the long-term impact of the board’s decisions.

Community input: I will sincerely solicit and listen to community input. I will hold myself to a high standard of courteous behavior.

Transparency: This means the public receives reasonable advance notice and an opportunity to be heard before the board takes action. I will enforce this in public and in closed session, if necessary.

Strong leadership: My goal is to build coalitions with staff, leading to the achievement of mutually derived goals. My focus will be, “How can I help staff help our students?”

Under the FRHSD’s voting system, residents of Howell and Farmingdale will vote for the Howell representative.

Incumbent Elizabeth Canario is running unopposed for a three-year term on the FRHSD board as the representative from Englishtown.

“I look forward to serving and continuing to see the excellence in our district,” Canario said. “I look forward to an even brighter future for the children of the Freehold Regional High School District.”

Under the FRHSD’s voting system, residents of Manalapan and Englishtown will vote for the Englishtown representative.

Incumbent Kathie Lavin is running unopposed for a three-year term as the FRHSD representative from Farmingdale.

“I continue to serve the community of Farmingdale. I am your voice on the FRHSD Board of Education,” Lavin said. “My priority has always been [to create] a positive environment for all our students. I thank the Farmingdale and Howell taxpayers for their support and look forward to another successful school year for all our students, teachers and administrators.”

Under the FRHSD’s voting system, residents of Howell and Farmingdale will vote for the Farmingdale representative.

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