October 30, 2019

Former Council Members Endorse Greg Stankiewicz for Board of Ed

To the Editor:

We strongly endorse the reelection of Greg Stankiewicz to the Princeton Board of Education.

Greg was elected vice president of the Board in January 2019. He has worked tirelessly with Board President Beth Behrend to increase transparency, bring the community into the Board’s decision-making process, and improve Board operations. For example, under their leadership, the Board created new local resident committees to advise the Board on critical issues such as enrollment and growth and schools capacity and hired a planning firm to actively engage our community in identifying all the options for addressing the overcrowding in our schools.

In addition to becoming Board vice president, Greg also joined the Facilities Committee in January 2019 and became chair, assuming responsibility for oversight of the implementation of the $26.9 million referendum. As chair, Greg opened the Facilities Committee meetings to the public and made referendum implementation data more easily available to the public. Under Greg’s leadership, the committee oversaw a number of successful renovations this past summer, including the installation of air conditioning in the high school gym and throughout Riverside Elementary School, and electrical upgrades at all four elementary schools.

As an expert in education policy and public finance, Greg understands the causes of the structural deficit our schools face and the devastating impact of cuts caused by funding shortfalls. He is constantly looking for new revenue and cost savings opportunities. For example, Greg helped the district move forward on shared services with the town, to save money and maximize quality, and engaged the district in statewide advocacy to get the resources promised but not delivered by the state. This advocacy helped convince the legislature to increase extraordinary special education aid, resulting in an additional $1.7 million for Princeton.

Greg has contributed so much more to our public schools, including helping develop new policies to reduce vaping and increase school safety and security; facilitating Princeton’s joining of the Rutgers Labor Management Collaborative to strengthen partnerships and collaboration with Princeton Public Schools unions; promoting equity and inclusion through restorative justice; and strengthening the Board’s functionality through ethics and governance training.

As former Princeton Council members, we know that no one member of a multi-person governing body can get things done alone. The Board of Education consists of ten people who must work together to move our district forward. That is why leading a highly functioning Board requires strong interpersonal skills. Greg has those skills in abundance. He is kind and easy to work with, and he is quick to give credit to others and reluctant to take any for himself. That is why we feel it is so important to highlight his accomplishments and re-elect him for another term.

Lance Liverman
Witherspoon Street

Heather Howard
Aiken Avenue