Treston thinks that the board has been forced to be more accessible as of late, because of the outrage over proposed cuts in the budget. And that that accessibility needs to become the norm.
Candidate Matthew Adler, a 14-year math teacher at Seaford High School, said that the board has to do a better job of explaining the budget and academic issues to the public. Adler, 38, who coaches his son’s little league team and has worked at Malibu Beach Camp, said he understands the “inner workings of a school district,” and could help the board improve. He feels that Long Beach teachers do not get adequate training, a critical area where the district can improve.
“We have wonderful teachers in the district, and I want to ensure that they have the tools [they need] so they can be successful,” said Adler. “I want to make sure our kids get the highest quality of education.”
He also said that residents leave school board meetings feeling confused because the board doesn’t do enough to inform them. As a math teacher, he said that he understands all of the new state mandates and curriculum requirements, and can help break it down for people.
“To be a successful teacher, you have to learn how to take the information that might be confusing to people, and present in a less confusing manner so they understand it,” he said. “This is one [skill] I think I can bring to the table.”
Candidate Jes Bellsey, 33, said she feels that her age group deserves better representation on the board.
“We are the ones who are buying the houses and having children,” she said. “I think it is important that we have a voice.”
Bellsey has been the Long Beach High School junior varsity cheerleading coach for the last seven years. She is a guidance counselor by trade and a former substitute teacher in the district. She currently works as a trade show and special projects coordinator.