4 - March 9, 2012 | Salem Community Patriot
The Word Around Town... Letters to our Editor
Please Re-Elect Berry to the School Board
I am Pamela Berry and it has been my honor and privilege
to serve the citizens of Salem as a member of the Salem School Board. During my tenure, I have served as the Board’s Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Secretary. I have been grateful for the support and encouragement of this community during the past and I am once again asking for your continued support for my re-election to the Salem School Board. Our school district, along with school districts throughout the nation, faces many challenges. We must remain true to our goal of maintaining high expectations and providing a quality education. In Salem putting an emphasis on literacy and mathematics has led to increased student academic achievement. Sustained, intensive teacher development and newer academic resources will benefit our students and lead to ever-higher levels of success. Our schools buildings are old, HVAC systems are deteriorating, and they do not meet safety requirements for fire and security. Lacking are adequate learning spaces for required special educational services and for improved teaching methods to meet today’s challenges. To correct these insufficiencies, the School Board has established a long range Master Facilities Plan to update our elementary schools, high school, and middle school. Te School Board is initiating this Master Plan in phases to minimize disturbance to the education process and to make the financial impact to the community feasible. Renovations to three elementary schools have already been completed well received. Te School Board and the community must stay focused on
following through with the Master Facilities Plan to renovate and improve our schools. To interrupt the process will lead to higher costs to the community at a later date. Tis year the board is presenting a Bond Article for Phase 2, which includes renovations and additions to the remaining elementary schools: Haigh, Soule, and Fisk. Enrollments in our school district remain cyclical and
projections beyond two to three years continue to be a challenge. Te superintendent has presented a 30-year enrollment report that details the roller coaster effect that enrollment has on student placement. Speculative suggestions by individuals on cost savings to the community, related to enrollments is exactly that, speculative, it’s like looking into a crystal ball and guessing. It is just hypothetical political pandering and a distraction. As many of you know, most of our School District’s staff has gone without pay raises, in some cases it has been four years. Trough the collective bargaining process between the Salem School Board and the various members of the different collective bargaining units, we have agreed to bring forward very conservative contracts to the voters. Tese contracts include some increases in salary and benefits, coupled with some decreases in other benefits. Te employees of our school district have been very understanding and fair in these economic times; however, it is time for us to be fair and approve these modest increases to our hard-working and deserving employees. I have learned much about education and the Salem School
District over the past several years. I have studied various educational programs tested throughout the country, along with their successes and failures. I am very familiar with
federal and state requirements and I have the experience of a parent with four children having gone through the Salem schools. My record shows that I have been fair and impartial to everyone involved; students, parents, teachers, staff, and taxpayers. I wish to continue to serve the community as a member of the Salem School Board and I appreciate the support that has been given to me. Please remember to vote on March 13.
Pamela Berry – Salem
Salem Basketball Supports Phase 2 Renovations
Salem Basketball Organization would like to give its
objective opinion regarding the addition of the three new gymnasiums at Lancaster, Barron and North Salem schools, and the potential that may come from additional gymnasiums at Soule, Fisk and Haigh schools. Te physical and health benefits from basketball are considerable. Te social benefits of basketball are immense as the core of playing basketball is to work together for one common goal, to grow and become a better team. Psychologically, studies have shown that incorporating athletics to a child’s routine enables leadership skills and builds confidence. Basketball builds physical, social, and psychological benefits. It boosts confidence, and this is an important aspect of childhood. Salem Basketball currently has over 50 teams participating,
and over 75 practices are required on a weekly basis. Prior to this season with the new gyms, the children were practicing and playing games in a cafeteria setting. Many times the ball would hit the ceiling, children would slip and slide due to the flooring, and the parents would have not have a place to sit to watch the practices because of all the tables and other items that must be stored in those rooms. Practices were routinely canceled due to blackout dates, school functions, or events that were run by outside entities. Tose affected included the children, parents, coaches, and other volunteers who, in most cases, needed to reschedule their work week for makeup practices, if any make up practices were even available. Tis caused many town residents, who had volunteered their time, to lose faith in the basketball program. With the addition of separate gyms at Barron, Lancaster,
and North Salem, the Salem NH Basketball Organization has experienced a dramatic improvement in scheduling practices. One of the reasons is that two teams have the ability to practice at two of the three new gyms at once. All the gyms have enabled an improved practice environment which has benefited the town and the basketball program tremendously. However, even with three new gyms, the basketball program has still had to utilize the middle school cafeterias for practices due to the lack of gym space, number of teams, and not being able to utilize the North Salem School gymnasium on Tursday nights and the Lancaster school gymnasium on Wednesday nights due to non-basketball events. Tis further substantiates the need for additional gymnasiums. Due to all the reasons stated above, the Salem Basketball
Organization supports moving forward with additional gymnasiums through the proposed renovations of Soule, Fisk and Haigh elementary schools – School Article 2 on March 13.
Additional gymnasiums will eliminate a waiting list or the need to tell children they cannot play due to lack of teams or gym time. Teir basketball experience and performance will continue to improve. With more community pride and a higher standard, more of today’s youth will come back to buy homes, raise families, and help further develop this community in the future. We will be able to support further growth in our youth through the game of basketball by simply developing a culture which allows our kids to become future leaders in Salem.
President, Salem Basketball Organization – Salem
DeClerq is the Right Choice for Salem
I ask you to join me in casting a vote for Edward Declercq for Planning Board . Ed has served as both an alternate and a full time member.
I’m supporting Edward Declercq for
Planning Board because he has demonstrated good judgment and common sense on matters before the board. He has continuously asked the right questions and always treats the applicants with respect and fairness. Please join me on March 13 and cast a vote for Edward Declercq for Planning Board.
Cindy Brasier – Salem
McKeon is the Voice for the Average Citizen
I am writing this letter to ask for your support of Tony
McKeon for Selectman. Many people have been asking, what does Tony stand for? What can he bring to the Board of
continued to page 5 - Letters to our Editor
Selectman? I would like to take this opportunity to tell you. I believe Mr. McKeon represents the average, working class citizen of Salem. Tony is a hard-working businessman who is well aware of the struggles of today’s family. I believe Tony will bring his levelheaded, budget conscious views to the running of this town. Mr. McKeon will also bring a fresh approach to the Board of Selectman. His new ideas will compliment the experiences of current board members. Further, Tony’s honesty and integrity will ensure that every decision he makes, as a Selectman, will be in the best interest of all citizens of our community.
Te final thought I would like to leave you with is the most
important. Tony McKeon cares about this community. He cares about the whole community, the town and the schools.
Reduces Operating Budget, thereby cutting taxes Yes
Supports Employees who have not had a cost of living adjustment since 2007 Employee Benefit Reductions
5% Decrease in Town’s share of Health Premiums Change to Lower Cost Health Insurance Carrier Reduction of 6 Sick Days per employee
Total Estimated Reduction / Savings to Town / Taxpayer in 2012
Does not include the additional savings in years 2013 & 2014
For more information please go to the Town of Salem Website at www.townofsalemnh.org/images/stories/finance/2012_warrant_article_narrative_final.pdf
Political Advertisement paid for by Norm Pelletier, Treasurer, 9 Veterans Memorial Parkway, Salem, NH 03079.
on Article #18
| Page 2
| Page 3
| Page 4
| Page 5
| Page 6
| Page 7
| Page 8
| Page 9
| Page 10
| Page 11
| Page 12
| Page 13
| Page 14
| Page 15
| Page 16
| Page 17
| Page 18
| Page 19
| Page 20