Millburn Elementary District 24 has become a controversial district. Its financial problems brought the layoffs of about 50 teachers over the last two years, and a superintendent was forced out after only two years. The controversy brought 11 candidates out for the school board; now there are 10. One 2-year seat and three 4-year seats are open.
For the 2-year seat, Jane Gattone was running against incumbent Shawn Lahr, but Lahr dropped out last week. Luckily Gattone already talks like an incumbent, with a thorough knowledge of district business, so she is endorsed. Nine are up for the other three seats, and most are good.
Lisa Scanio, a parent with a teaching background, is the lone incumbent among them who has been heavily involved in communicating the school's financial situation and other district business. Joseph Pineau is a Millburn parent with a professional financial background who already knows details of district business.
Scott Miller also is a Millburn parent, with well-thought-out ideas for the district including, for better or worse, restructuring it into grade level centers. Scott Zellmann is a middle-school teacher and parent who shows a disciplined approach, if not yet a lot of ideas. Jay Kao is a parent and well-educated business strategist who'd like to study all the options, but we're not sure what he'll bring in the end.
Christine Jones is a Millburn parent who'd like to ensure the children get the most well-rounded education, but it's not clear she grasps all the budget difficulties. Greg Ball is also very well-educated and has a lot of teaching experience, but he appears to be just learning the district.
Julie Murray is a Millburn parent with teaching experience and an education leadership degree but who's also just starting to learn the district. And Keith Landy hasn't given us his thoughts. In the end, Scanio, with her needed board experience, is heartily endorsed. We endorse Pineau for his expertise and passion. And we endorse Miller for his detailed thoughts on the district.