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JP Foster, Rich Wilson Eye School Board Seats

Already a member of the town planning board, Foster said he is frustrated with the board's actions as of late.

Although nominating petitions for school board candidates aren't due for another week and a half, two candidates have handed in paperwork to run for the East Hampton Board of Education.

J.P. Foster, a parent of two students in the district and a member of the town planning board, and Rich Wilson, who has grandchildren who attend East Hampton schools, have handed in nominating petitions, according to Kerri Stevens, the district clerk.

There are three positions up for grabs this year. A total of eight people picked up petitions, she said.

Foster is already a longtime public servant. Foster has worked as a public safety dispatcher for the Village of East Hampton for 23 years. He is currently a communication supervisor. He is also a former police officer.

In 2012, he was appointed to the East Hampton Town Planning Board. If elected in May, Foster said he doesn't plan on stepping down from that position. "I enjoy being on the planning board. It is a lot of time, but it's doable," he said.

Having run for a seat on the school board in 2005, Foster said he has been considering running again for several years. His daughter is approaching her freshman year at East Hampton High School, and his son is an East Hampton Middle School.

"I figured, 'What am I waiting for?'," he said. He's grown frustrated with what's been happening at the board level the past few months, namely the situation regarding . Instead she was asked to return to the classroom. 

His children attended John M. Marshall Elementary School, as well. "We had a great experience. I just don't want to see us lose sight of the kids," he said.

A native of Sag Harbor, Foster has lived in East Hampton since 1990. He is also a real estate agent for 12 years, and is currently a vice president of sales for Town & Country Real Estate.

Among some of the aspects he'd like to focus on if elected, Foster said, "I want the district to follow their own policies. I want to make sure we have valid evaluations — of course we don't get to see that, because it's confidential. I'd just like to see a little bit more transparency than we've seen."

"I'm really concerned with the direction the elementary school is going to go in hiring a new principal. I really want to see them hire somebody from within the district," he said, adding he is a proponent of keeping administrations and teachers local. He would like to see the board create some kind of a program to help develop teachers to become administrators.

He also said he thinks it is important for the board to foster a better relationship with the public.

Nominating petitions are due on April 22. The election and budget vote are held on May 21.

tito April 12, 2013 at 02:18 PM
two great men with long ties in the community. their input and advice in the boards decision making would be an asset.
Dana April 12, 2013 at 02:47 PM
What do Mr Foster and Mr Wilson think about the recent decision to remove the drivers education program? Parents will now have to pay for the course and the classes will be held before the school day begins or after school and on weekends. Last I heard the fee was 550.00.
jerry April 12, 2013 at 11:14 PM
These two men would be a great thing for EHUFSD! Great ties with the community and they seem to have their goals set for the CHILDREN not like the current board! Good luck as most people know nobody can fix all things but honest people can add good things and these guys are honest !
todd April 12, 2013 at 11:45 PM
7:44 pm on Friday, April 12, 2013 What makes you say the current Board isn't focused on the children? From what I read they are working hard for our children and community against a backdrop of incompetence and patronage by the former superintendent. I don't care whether or not our teachers or administrators are locals. I just care that they are the most talented. The best person for the job should prevail.
Karin Gosman April 12, 2013 at 11:53 PM
Hmm, ALL the current Board members are honest & keep the students as their first priority. It's always nice to see community members want to get involved. Hope all candidates understand all the hours involved to be an effective Board member. Good luck.
Col April 13, 2013 at 01:00 AM
The school board would be blessed to have these two amazing, honest additions who are completely all for the children. I wish them luck!
todd April 13, 2013 at 01:26 AM
They are very good guys. But bet you a buck that the first difficult and unpopular decision they make will provoke some to question their devotion to the children. I believe several of the current board members have children in the district so to imply they don't have our children's best interests as priority is absurd.
joe hammer April 13, 2013 at 11:09 AM
Maybe Jerry is out of content of the current board on the focus of their intrest in our children, but maybe change in board is needed. I do not think this board is doing as good of a job as they can. With the release of Ms Kraus and the board members saying they can not do anything about it is not an answer in my oppinion. Mr Burns is acting as a sole and that is not good,the school board,current, is letting this happen and seem to have little or no imput on his decissions.We need people who are and can be acountable for his actions. The current board voted him in and do not want to be acountable for anything it seems to me. When they voted Mr Burns for his job he stated he will not need an assistant till next school board meeting when I preume they voted to hire his assistant?` The school board need to be accountable for the actions of the addministration I beleive these two people will do this. And yes not everyone will agree with some of the hard decission that have to be made if everyone did that means they are people pleasers not leaders,I beleive The two canidates will be leaders not pleasers.I alsio must say about hiring freinds,if that freind needs a job and can do it without complaints from others around them it is not right but accetable but when you have a number of complaints about the freind make that hard deccision and fix it!!
jerry April 13, 2013 at 07:45 PM
I am sorry I feel the way about the current board. I am out of line on their focus.They are focused on the children more than I think.As far as what the past superintendent created that same board was there for most of that . They had almost 2 years to try and repair the past upsets and have done nothing but shift personal around and cause more havick and poor conditions than before. The people of the school district should be more informed on not only the glory but also the upsets that occur.I am sorry but when a person takes an office the past needs to be addressed as much as the future.I hope changing of the board ,"the taxpayer voice", will make a difference.

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