Mandy L. Merrill School board member-elect

Mandy L. Merrill School board member-elect

BRUNSWICK

Brunswick School Board challenger Ben Tucker defeated incumbent Brenda Clough Tuesday, 1,189- 456, easily winning the District 2 seat. In the open District 1 school board race, Mandy L. Merrill captured the win over opponent Byron Watson, a former board chairman, in a closer race.

On his campaign’s Facebook page, Tucker wrote: “Thank you voters of District 2! And thank you to everybody who helped me in this campaign. I am excited about serving on the School Board!”

Clough, in an email, said she keeps the faith in a strong public school system.

Ben Tucker School board member-elect

Ben Tucker School board member-elect

“Win or lose, I will continue to support public education and will be writing regular blogs about education in Brunswick,” Clough wrote Tuesday.

Clough’s blog can be found online at clough747.blogspot.com.

In District 1, Merrill received 731 votes compared to Watson’s 636.

“ Just want to say thank you to everyone who supported me!!” Merrill wrote on her campaign’s Facebook page. “So honored to have the opportunity to represent District 1 on the school board!”

Tucker and Merrill will be sworn into office in January 2017 once results are certified at the Maine secretary of state’s office.

District’s future

Meanwhile, the Brunswick School Board meets tonight at 7 p.m. at Town Hall, 85 Union St.

For the 2016-17 academic year, school enrollment in grades K through 12 is about 2,336 students, making Brunswick one of the state’s largest school departments. In fact, Brunswick is the 23rd largest out of 25 districts. Portland’s school district size ranks first, online rankings show.

Four school buildings make up the Brunswick district: a high school and a junior high school, plus two elementary schools. Building a new junior high school at a cost perhaps approaching $30 million is one Issue on the school district’s plate. Another topic of discussion is the search for a permanent principal for Harriet Beecher Stowe Elementary School.

On the district’s website the search committee has set July 1, 2017, as the date the selected candidate will begin work. Grade 6-12 Curriculum Director John Paige will serve as interim principal until Dec. 22 and a temporary principal may serve until a new principal is hired.

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