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Dwayne Purvis

Editor,

Within a few days, we will decide on candidates, budgets, and other warrant

articles. Local elections are arguably more important than state or federal

elections, as the benefits or consequences are realized sooner. Given the tax

structure in New Hampshire, our property taxes fund our town and our district

schools. Those of us who show up get to decide. As in prior years, there are

real issues of concern that will change the dynamic of our community.

We enjoy a rich tradition of having great schools. I believe most people want to

continue this, but there are serious concerns with the new approaches to

education, and the lack of oversight among the majority of the school board

members. Many of these have been covered in print as well as social media.

How we deal with these issues will be determined, in part, by the people we

elect this year. I hope you will join with me supporting the three School Board

candidates following.

For the Souhegan Cooperative School District, to give this school board a

desperately needed infusion of more independent, practical, and fiscally sound

thought, please support Stephanie Grund and Tony Labranche. Stephanie and

Tony are a humble breath of fresh air who are honest brokers, who will be

considerate to all members, teachers, parents, students, and especially the

community.

Stephanie has served on the Amherst School District Ways and Means

Committee, also as the chairperson for one year. She Later worked for SAU39.

Stephanie is willing to ask difficult questions to drive a dialogue that furthers

communication between administration, the board, and the community. She

understands the budgeting process and the challenges with standardized

testing, grading, and transcripts.

Tony Labranche is an absolutely amazing young man, who has an incredible

future in public service. Tony is a Senior at Souhegan High School and has first

hand-knowledge of the current student experience. Raised by a single parent,

Tony understands the tenants of respect, hard work, responsibility, loyalty,

honesty, and achievement. He understands value, as he is not wasteful with

resources and does not encumber his mother with unnecessary wants.

As if that is not enough, Tony is a cancer survivor. He has never used his

diagnosis as an excuse to underachieve or seek sympathy. In fact, Tony strives

to reach his full growth potential with a rarely matched zeal for life and diligence

to task. Tony has served on the Souhegan High school Community Counsel all


four years, and currently serves as the chairperson of the Constitutional

Interpretation Committee.

Since the beginning of Souhegan High School, much has been said by the most

ardent supporters of student advocacy or voice and choice. A vote for Tony

honors that support. A side note to Tony’s mom, great job! We are proud of you

too. Tony, we are all pulling for you!

Regarding the Amherst School District School Board, while there are two seats

contested, I can only target support for John Glover. The ASD Board has some

unique relationships between board members, and it is very concerning that

there exists the possibility of a new member, if elected, being employed by an

existing member. Does this create a conflict of interest or does this give the

employer board member two votes on all issues? Please consider these

ramifications.

John is an independent private family man with a heart of service. John has a

Law degree but chooses to work as an environmental engineering consultant.

John is passionate and has worked very hard for ASD in his first term. While he

wants to afford the administration the benefit of the doubt, I have heard John

ask tough questions aimed at keeping the administration accountable. John has

and will continue to challenge the administration as a duly elected board

member must. He will continue to be considerate with board members,

teachers, parents, students, and the community. There are major issues with

curriculum, grading, space, and staffing, confronting ASD, and John is well

equipped to encourage the board and administration to consider the pros, cons,

and especially the facts. John is NOT a rubber stamp. Let us join together with

a targeted vote for John Glover exclusively.

It is our right and privilege to vote. Regardless of your choice, please come out

to help decide the direction of our community.

Faithfully,

Dwayne Purvis

Amherst

March 2020

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