The Scarborough Board of Education recall is about accountability. The central issue is simple: Board leadership has failed to act as the check and balance on their one employee, Superintendent Julie Kukenberger.

Board members Jodi Shea, Cari Lyford and Donna Beeley have done wonderful things for this town in their tenure, and they are intelligent, respectable, good people. That does not make them effective board leaders at this juncture.

In the two years of employing Superintendent Kukenberger, they have appeared either unable or unwilling to disagree with or challenge her decisions, despite public outcry and overwhelming negative feedback from teachers, students, parents and citizens. They have yet to publicly address the union’s vote of no confidence.

Effective leaders can admit when they have made mistakes, regretted decisions or changed their minds. Instead of discussing publicly where they could have done things differently, they have dug in their heels in support of a failing superintendent, who had the ability to stop this recall by rectifying her own missteps, but chose not to.

This is not a group recalling people we simply disagree with. This is not about feelings or emotions, as the Town Council would have you believe. This is about recognizing failed leadership, and doing what we can to stop this runaway train from careening through our town, leaving ripple effects for years. Please vote “yes” on May 8.

Kristen Nilsen


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