Statement from SCSD Board Candidate Jeanette Kunow

Statement from SCSD Board Candidate Jeanette Kunow

HomeTown NewsNet has invited all candidates running to be on the Suffern Central School District Board to send in bios and information.  We do not endorse or oppose candidates in this race. 

I have been a resident of this district for over 35 years.

I understand how important a school’s reputation is to the well-being of a community for both current residents and in attracting new families.

When my husband and I decided to relocate from long Island to Rockland County, one of the top considerations was the reputation of the school district. I attribute the success of all four of our children directly to the education they received at Suffern Central School District.

Stephanie, a graduate of Penn State University, is an elementary school speech pathologist in Irvington.  Brittany, a graduate of the University of Scranton, is a middle school math teacher in Pleasantville. Ashley, a Gold Award Girl Scout, is a graduate of Lafayette College and is employed as a chemical engineer, while working towards earning her MBA at Villanova University.  My son, Zack, an Eagle Scout, is a sophomore working towards a degree in forestry at the University of Maine.

As a board member, I would bring to the table a unique breadth and depth of over 28 years of experience in community service, both serving on boards and in leadership positions.  I also bring a proven track record of skill-sets needed to develop strong relationships between the community and our district.

I bring both formal training and practical experiences in helping organizations achieve success in planning for the future.  I know how boards work and function. I am fair, listen to all perspectives.

I consider all the evidence, and I am an independent thinker.

What I see now is that our district is facing many challenges, such as declining enrollment and additional concerns about safety including an increase in bullying, teen suicides and a dangerous drug epidemic.  Funding sources rely on tax bases and, to some degree, our expenditures are tied to requirements from Albany.   Loss of contribution from major corporations, such as the recently departed Novartis, places additional financial strains on our district, which already carries high taxes.

We as a school board can stand united to ensure that our school district finds ways to continue to thrive and attract families to support our schools.  We need to think outside the box, but remain grounded in our principles and community values. For this, we need members with strong teamwork, innovative ideas, who can work well with each other, as well as and with administrators, faculty, staff, parents and community members to help steer our schools into the future.

I have been asked to run for the board often over the past 25 years, and feel that now is the right time.

I have done my homework. I have already attended a prospective board member workshop in Westchester last month and have years of experience to offer my community, neighbors, and future families as we support the students together.

My track record has proven my commitment, ability to work as a team player and my personal investment in the district.  I have the time, experience, and dedication to pay forward all the wonderful opportunities my children enjoyed.

In addition to all the academic opportunities, my children also participated in the vast array of athletic opportunities the district offers.  As a crew, track, swim and volleyball parent, I experienced first hand the district’s commitment to our athletic programs. Two of my children continued on to swim at division one colleges,  one was a national qualifier in crew and another a state qualifier for swimming.

My children also participated in our fine music & arts programs.

We need to ensure that a full array of AP courses remain available for our students who achieve on the highest academic levels.   For our athletes, sports must remain top notch, for our musicians and artists these thriving programs remain important to our district.  For our children who are interested in service careers…we prepare them well.  We also have a responsibility to help our students to develop the life skills necessary to become kind, caring compassionate and productive members of the community.

Whatever it is that makes Suffern students thrive, we need to let them shine.

We can do it together.​

I hope you will give me the opportunity to continue my service to our schools, students and community as a member of the Suffern Central School Board.  I ask for your support and vote on May 21st.

Thank you!

  • 25 years dedicated volunteer service for Suffern schools
  • PTA President of Cherry Lane, SMS, SHS, PTA Council 
  • Past member of Central Hudson Region PTA
  • Current Parent Advocate for Special Education Students: 13+ years 
  • Past Board Member Suffern Swimming & Diving Booster Club
  • Suffern Junior Woman’s Club Member, 28 years
  • President Suffern Sea Lions Swim,Non-Profit 501-C, 10+ years
  • Girl Scout Leader 15 years 
  • Reach Foundation Honoree for service to PTA, Scouting & Community
  • Recipient of Lifetime PTA Membership Award
  • Paralegal at Rubin & Rubin
  • Stay at Home Mom
  • Attended workshop for Prospective School Board Members, April 2019

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