Cape Elizabeth voters elected Heather Altenburg, Elizabeth Scifres and Kathleen Curry-Sparks to the School Board on Tuesday in a crowded seven-way race for three at-large seats.

Altenburg, an incumbent, received the most votes with 2,178. Scifres, also an incumbent, received 1,818 votes and Curry-Sparks received 1,663.

David Hughes came in fourth with 1,422 votes, followed by Kejda Gjermani with 1,226, Samantha Lowe with 1,117 votes and Audra Gore with 591.

Scifres, who has worked with four Cape Elizabeth superintendents in her nine years on the board, said Wednesday she looks forward to continue working with Dr. Christopher Record, who became Cape Elizabeth’s superintendent in July.

“I think we have found our match, we have found the right fit,” said Scifres. “He is really connecting with the



Curry-Sparks is also eager to work with Record.

“I decided to run because our district was at a really pivotal moment of change and growth and challenge,” said Curry-Sparks. “We have some tremendous new leadership in our new superintendent. I’m thrilled to be joining their team and have a lot to learn.”

Altenburg said Thursday that the School Board will “continue to be a strong board.”

The three winners support a plan to replace the Pond Cove Elementary and middle school buildings and renovate the high school, which is expected to be part of a referendum question in 2022.

“There’s been five years leading up to the decision to put it before the public,” Altenburg said. “Throughout the whole process, this was the recommendation that was brought before us.”

The board has worked closely with many members of the community on the plan, she said.

“It’s been a well-thought out, inclusive process that has incorporated citizens, parents, teachers, staff, administrators, board members and town council members,” she said.

Scifres said repairing the already existing building would not be cost-effective.

“Pond Cove and the middle school are really one big kind of rambling, ramshackle, single building,” Scifres said. “Throwing more money at it really isn’t going to extend the useful life. We need to start from scratch.”


A rebuild, she said, could take into account how teachers and students use classroom spaces and how they will use them in the future. It’s also a good financial decision, because “good schools have positive impacts on property value” and “the entire character of the town,” she said.

Curry-Sparks plans to “jump right into” supporting the project. She also hopes to work directly with parents and students.

“Community conversation is going to be really important, being able to listen to multiple points of view about school budget issues that impact taxes (and) strongly held positions on how to improve our schools, make them more welcoming, more diverse and more inclusive,” she said.

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