This site aims to inform and mobilize Beverly parents to take an active role in all issues related to the funding and operation of the city's schools. It was launched in the spring of 2008, when the city saw its first-ever override attempt fail, followed by the closure of a nearly-new elementary school. Subsequent years have seen further cuts that have led to larger class sizes across the district. While the opening of an impressive new high school and plans to replace the city's aging middle school give us reason to be optimistic, the school community must be ever vigilant in demanding appropriate school funding by city and state governments, and better community communications from the district and School Committee.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Intriguing Mayor's Race Shaping Up

With today's announcement by City Council President Mike Cahill that he will be a candidate for Mayor this fall, Beverly voters can look forward to what could be the most competitive Mayor's race in memory.

Cahill joins Tim Flaherty, his predecessor as Council President, who announced his candidacy back in October, as a challenger to Mayor Scanlon, who has yet to officially announce, but has made it clear that he does intend to run for an unprecedented ninth term. The Globe even reported last month that the candidacy of 2007 mayoral candidate Rick Marciano—who would have to be a 100-1 longshot in this field—would make it a four man race.

Cahill has strong credentials, both in politics and in education.  He served for ten years on Beacon Hill as Beverly's State Representative, and is a former teacher and founder of the Beverly Education Roundtable.

In his announcement today, Cahill described his education platform:
Build educational greatness throughout our community – We have a unique wealth of innovative educational and business talent right here in Beverly, with our many educational institutions and our strong business sector.  We have the potential to provide diverse learning opportunities to every child and adult in Beverly.  In all areas, but particularly in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (a recognized weakness in the educational system throughout America), the resources right here within our community are impressive.  Building partnerships locally to deliver these opportunities to our children must be a top priority.  Our children can and should develop even greater skills and knowledge; our community and our region have always produced the very best in skilled, educated talent – we can do even more.
While Mayor Scanlon is riding relatively high in the school community due primarily to his success in seeing the high school through to completion, even many of his supporters often question his management style, and acknowledge that Beverly could use some new vision.

With two serious challengers this year, we hope the race can produce a positive debate on the issues, and present some true vision for the city, and some civility—something most recent Mayoral races in Beverly have lacked.

2/16 UPDATE: Today's Salem News has a full report on Cahill's announcement.

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