Education Op/Ed

Letter to the editor: Cornwall’s Kramer earns support in ACSD board race

The current Cornwall School families writing this letter would like to recommend Chris Kramer for the Cornwall seat on the ACSD Board. For us, Chris stands out as a leader in a strong field of candidates for this position.

Chris has served since 2019 as co-chair of Friends of Cornwall School. During that time, he has shown unparalleled dedication to our school. He was one of only a small handful of volunteers who kept the organization active during the height of the pandemic. Chris helped transform the most beloved traditional school events into new formats that could be sustained even under pandemic restrictions. He was instrumental in fundraising to support outdoor education, including the creation of a second outdoor classroom with the purchase of an additional tent and other outdoor learning supplies. He also led and contributed to numerous efforts to help boost staff and school morale during such a challenging time.

As restrictions have lifted, Chris has brought new opportunities to our school community. Last spring, he established local partnerships in Cornwall with MALT, the Middlebury Community Music Center, Middlebury Studio School, TaeKwon Do K.I.C.K.S., and other providers to offer afterschool programming, where we previously had no local option. This year, he coordinated with the town selectboard to fully fund these programs, making them tuition-free and open to all students. He has even brought VTrans together with the Cornwall selectboard to improve signage along Route 30, a first step in establishing a safer route between the school building and afterschool programming at our town hall.

At the district level, Chris has advocated for thoughtful consideration of district-wide changes. Before the MUMS expansion, for example, Chris cautioned in an interview with the Addison Independent, “Some people may not realize that the 6th-grade move also entails a complete revamping of the model for how the whole school operates all grades. MUMS has been considered a model middle school in our district, and much of that comes from the care and attention that teachers have been able to give to students during a time of growth in their lives that can be socially and emotionally challenging. If we’re going to go through with the transition, we need to make sure we do it right and don’t lose too much of what has worked so well.”

Many of the concerns Chris identified have now become key challenges that the board and district have wrestled with in the transition. This type of foresight will be needed as we consider other potential transitions going forward.

Throughout it all, Chris has insisted on transparency in the decision-making process, even when doing so has, at times, put him under the spotlight. His willingness to pursue openness and accountability, even under pressure, is the kind of leadership we need to build confidence and trust in district proceedings.

For all of these reasons, we wholeheartedly endorse Chris as our choice for the Cornwall seat on the ACSD Board.

Meghan Allen, William Allen, Jennifer Barnes, Mark Barnes, Chelsey Berlic, Oliver Berlic, Claire Bove, Alisa Breau, Amy Carey, Christopher Carey, Ashley Clark, Brian Clark, Nick Dika, Adam Federman, Chelsea Fellows-Stanley, Mike Magluilo, Noelle Magluilo, Melissa Mitchell, Mike Mitchell, Jessica Morse, David Nelson, Sarah Pelkey, Shelly Shackett, Edward Shackett, Jennifer Thompson, Elizabeth Toder, Sarah Trouslard, Amanda Van Dellen, Chet Van Dellen

Cornwall

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