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Two new members take seats on Cape Henlopen board

July 2, 2019

Two new members were sworn in to the Cape Henlopen school board June 27.

The Cape Gazette welcomes new members Janet Maull-Martin and Bill Collick, both longtime administrators in the district, who along with incumbent board President Alison J. Myers won election in decisive victories. The new members are certain to bring strong voices and experience as they deliberate the issues that affect our schools.

We also say thank you to two long-serving and effective board members, Roni Posner and Andy Lewis.

Posner, elected in 2010 and re-elected in 2014, brought insight and experience from a career that spanned more than 35 years in education. A huge fan of Cape schools, Posner could be found at countless school events, always ready to congratulate students and staff.

Like Posner, Lewis was elected in 2009 and ran unopposed in 2015, serving a full decade on the board. Always prepared and articulate, he could be counted on to share a careful, data-driven analysis of board issues. His first and only priority as a board member was finding the best solutions for Cape students.

Cape school district, led by a strong school board, has passed referendum after referendum to build and upgrade its schools.  In 2019, voter turnout at Cape was among the highest in the state. 

While candidates in Cape elections have drawn more than 1,500 votes, statewide research by Delaware Campaign for Achievement shows it takes an average of only 315 votes to win a five-year term on a Delaware school board.

House Bill 134, which remains before the Legislature next year, would reduce school board terms to three years. This measure deserves support.

While it may not result in higher voter turnout, three-year terms would widen the pool of candidates and would increase board accountability to voters. 

In an era where even a three-year term can feel like an eternity, the time is right to shorten school board terms and give voters more say over who controls school curriculum, school climate and school budgets.

Editor’s note: The original dates of Andy Lewis’s election to the school board were corrected. He was elected in 2009, and he ran unopposed in 2014.

  • Editorials are considered by the editorial board and written by Dennis Forney, publisher emeritus, and Laura Ritter, news editor, with occasional contributions from other board members: Trish Vernon, CoPublisher and Editor; Dave Frederick, sports editor emeritus; Jen Ellingsworth, associate editor; Nick Roth, sports editor; and Chris Rausch, CoPublisher and General Manager.