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Hudson school board fills vacant seat


HUDSON–The Board of Education has selected David Kisselburgh to replace board member Elizabeth Fout, who resigned last month. Mr. Kisselburgh, 49, is director of Environmental Services at Columbia Memorial Hospital, where his duties include patient safety. He has coached softball for girls between the ages of 9 and 13 and was president of a junior girls softball team. In this capacity, he interacted extensively with youths and their parents.

Mr. Kisselburgh was born in the institution where he now works, Columbia Memorial Hospital, and has lived in Hudson his entire life.

Three eligible candidates submitted letters of intent for the open board seat, and at its meeting Monday, October 21 the board called attention to all three, each of whom sat with the public. Then Board President Kelly Frank asked her colleagues for nominations. Tiffany Martin Hamilton, board vice president, nominated Mr. Kisselburgh and the board immediately voted on his nomination, which was adopted 4-1. Board members Frank, Hamilton, Joseph Carr and Carrie Otty voted for; member Peter Rice, Jr., voted against.

According to rules Ms. Frank had announced before the nominating began, since the first candidate nominated had won acceptance, he got the seat, taking his oath of office administered by Board Clerk Frieda Van Deusen right where he had been sitting. He then walked to the front of the room and sat at the board table.

Because the board’s Facilities Committee needed an additional member, Mr. Kisselburgh was assigned to that committee.

His term, like that of Mr. Carr, will last until May 20, 2014, when the next school board elections take place. Since both got their seats by appointment rather than election, and the May school elections will be the public’s chance to confirm them if they choose to seek full terms.

Also at the October 21 meeting:

Student Representative William Glasser announced that a volleyball benefit had raised $1,200 for Erica Wordon, 23, a former Hudson High School student diagnosed over the summer with brain cancer. More sports events, with at least a portion of the ticket revenue going for Wordon, are planned.

April Prestipino, coordinator of school improvement, reported that 7th and 8th grade teachers took the multiple choice portion of samples tests prepared as part of the new standardized testing program and ended up arguing among themselves over which answers were the best. Since the teachers themselves cannot agree on the answers, Ms. Prestipino wondered what would be going through the minds of students taking the test.

Ms. Prestipino and Superintendent Maria Suttmeier announced plans to add character development to the 7th grade curriculum. Ms. Suttmeier spoke of the importance of character education along with academic education. “We can’t have one without the other,” she said.

The superintendent sees “a dramatic shift” in the character of youths in junior high. At that time, they face physical maturity and other aspects of the adult world for the first time. These factors make 7th grade a time when schools should do what they can to help students develop positive character traits.

Under design is a course on character development intended for inclusion in 7th grade social studies. Ms. Prestipino said the course still needed careful crafting and evaluation before it is launched. “We want to get it right,” she said, “We want to be proud.”




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