2017-11-02 / News

Three vie for RSU 23 Board of Directors seat in OOB

Incumbent Peter Flaherty will seek another three-year term on the Old Orchad Beach Regional School Unit 23 Board of Directors. Challenging him are Chris LaSalle and Chris Prosser. Prosser did not return a completed survey before deadline. Below are the responses from Flaherty and LaSalle.

Name: Peter L Flaherty
Age: 71

Address: 5 Cedar Ave.
Phone: 590-3679
Occupation: Retired teacher/
administrator (34 years in Saco
Education: BS, MS University of
Southern Maine
Family: Married to Jayne Flaherty,
two sons
Organization and activities: RSU
23 School Board; MAPS Scholarship
Foundation president; OOB Historical
Society volunteer

Top three issues:

1. Our pre-K program at Jameson School has been very successful. We have been fortunate to have been funding it through a federal grant which will end this school year. Our plan is to fully fund pre-k and to open it to all families in town.

2. We’re always working toward improving communications with parents, the town government and the community in general to insure that the schools are always seen as an integral part of the town.

3. The DOE will be visiting our schools in November to tour our buildings and grounds as part of the application process to secure state funding for a new school. We expect to hear from the state sometime in June of 2018 if we make the list for funding.

What should the Regional School Unit Board Director’s top priority be?

I believe that the top priority for the RSU 23 school board should always be to provide the best education for our children that the town can support. My experience with the schools in OOB as both a parent and a grandparent is that the citizens have always been very supportive of its schools. We are fortunate to have very dedicated and committed parents, teachers, administrators, and support staff.

Peter Flaherty did not answer the following questions “Why are you seeking elected office?” and “What should Old Orchard Beach residents expect of their RSU Board Director?”

Name: Chris LaSalle
Age: 46
Address: 9 Hilltop Drive
Phone: 934-2454
Occupation: Software development manager at IDEXX
Family: Married to Candice LaSalle. We have two

children: Gabe is a freshman at OOB High School and Charlotte is in fifth grade at Loranger Memorial School.

Education completed: Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems from Southern New Hampshire University

Organizations and activities: Loranger/Jameson PTO Treasurer, Boy Scout Troop 310 Assistant Scoutmaster

Top three issues:

1. Buildings and school grounds. I believe students work best in an environment that is both comfortable and safe.

2. Curriculum. I believe that curriculum should focus on fundamentals, as well as providing the opportunity to have “hands on” experience. Project based learning, community service, and internships are some examples of the variety of teaching methods that can help engage and inspire students.

3. Extra-curriculars. I strongly believe that students should have access to extra-curricular programs including music, theater, sports, vocational experience, and advanced placement. All of these can help a student become more well-rounded as well as offer them more opportunities to find their passion.

Why are you seeking elected office?

My family has lived in Old Orchard Beach for almost 14 years and both of our children have been in the school system since kindergarten. I have been involved in the schools in various roles along the way: PTO, volunteering for events, etc., and I’ve always wanted to do more to help. Being a member of the school board will allow me to help support the entire school district and all students. I believe my experience as a volunteer in the schools, as well as my career experience in managing software development teams, makes me a great fit for the School Board.

What should the Regional School Unit Board Director’s top priority be?

As a member of the School Board, I should be talking with, and listening to, all members of the community - parents, teachers, administrators, and residents. I want to fully understand our strengths and opportunities so I can work with the superintendent and fellow School Board members to help set and prioritize goals for the school district.

What should Old Orchard Beach residents expect of their RSU Board Director?

Residents should be able to count on their School Board members to work with the superintendent to make decisions that are in the best interest of students and education. I am looking forward to doing my part in bringing the best education and opportunities to the students of Old Orchard Beach.

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