(Image via Unsplash)

Letter to the Editor: Meet the Candidates Legacy Moves Forward

At the February 8, 2024, Board of Education meeting, Board Trustee Sam Perlman asked the Board and Superintendent to deny an application by the PTA Council to use school grounds to hold a Meet the Candidates Night event. The event has been held for over 25 years by the PTA and moderated by the League of Women Voters.  The PTA Council’s application was not even on the agenda for approval at this meeting, so this request was neither timely nor appropriate.

Mr. Perlman implied that Council, and especially Council Leadership, is unable to provide a fair and non-partisan event. “The Board’s concern should be the use of District facilities for an event that will be viewed as strongly partisan.” He also stated that the event, under PTA leadership, “does not offer a level playing field for all candidates.”

Allyson Edelman, current Joint PTA Council President, addressed the Board at the March meeting and said, “As community members and parents, PTA members are allowed to support candidates and to make financial contributions to candidates of their choice as long as they are not using their “PTA titles or affiliations in any ads or fliers on behalf of a candidate,” as stated in the NYS PTA Resource Guide. Also, the League of Women Voters runs the Meet the Candidate Night and decides which questions from the audience will be asked. The moderator is never a district resident. As Mr. Perlman is well aware, the PTA’s involvement is limited to arranging for the League to attend, securing a location for the event, and handing out index cards.”

Furthermore, Edelman said, “The sponsoring of the Meet the Candidate event is an act of public service, whereby candidates are given the opportunity to talk about community issues. It was highly offensive to each and every one of us to be disrespected in a public forum regarding the integrity of our leadership. More importantly, we should, as a community, PTA, and as a School Board, focus our attention on the betterment of our school and our children’s welfare and dedicate our focus, resources and effort to matters that directly impact their daily lives as opposed to these distractions of resisting the outcomes of prior elections that are clearly in our rear-view mirror.  We are better together and can accomplish so much more by working together.”

We, past Joint PTA Council Presidents, agree with Allyson Edelman and the comments she made publicly. “Mr. Perlman’s allegation is meritless and he fails to provide any instance of unfairness, partiality, or bias that occurred at any Meet the Candidates Night”. He participated in two as a board candidate without one complaint or suggestion before or after the event.

At the April meeting, the Board voted 4-1 to allow the building use, with Mr. Perlman voting against it. Without Mr. Perlman’s support, the event will be held on May 14 at 7:30 p.m. in the High School Little Theater.

-Sincerely PTA Council Past Presidents, Gina Levy (2020-2022), Maria Bombace (2018-2020), Lisa Davis (2016-2018), Jill Citron (2014-2016) and Alisha Reiben (2012-2014)

Just Getting Started

Kevin James Thornton’s super second act

By Amanda Olsen • May 10, 2024


Dining guide-spring
  • No events