No excuse not knowing about the three men running for two open seats on the San Carlos School Board. Incumbent Seth Rosenblatt and newcomers Adam Rak and Peter Tzifas are making their cases at forums, informal gatherings and online, including Facebook.
Tonight, The San Carlos Ed Foundation will hold the first of two sponsored “debates” at Central Middle School Library from 7-9 pm. Voters will have a second chance Friday morning at the Heather Elementary Auditorium 9-11am.
If those dates don’t work, you can meet the candidates at coffee or wine events hosted by San Carlans, details listed on the candidate’s websites.
At a community meeting on October 10th at the home of Andrea and Mark Maxwell, Rak – an exec with a tech trade association – and Rosenblatt will appear together; not totally surprising as both are endorsed by current members of the San Carlos School Board and the San Mateo Daily Journal, which encouraged Tzifas “to stay involved.”
Indeed, Tzifas – a civil engineer and current chair on the city’s Transportation and Circulation Commission – may do just that. A couple extra seats could open up on the K-8 School Board if trustee Mark Olbert is elected to the City Council and trustee Carrie DuBois (endorsed by the SM Daily Journal) nails a seat on the Sequoia Union High School District Board. It’s not like there’s a plethora of qualified candidates willing to take the unpaid position which will deal with tough issues like the state budget mess and crowded schools.
Tzifas, an immigrant from Greece, said his decision to run wasn’t easy given the challenges of executing a campaign. He decided to file a week before the papers were due. “I want to be as involved as I can in my child’s education and this, I believe, is where I can have the biggest impact,” Tzifas explained.
For Tzifas, the biggest challenges facing the School Board are: money/funding, facilities maintenance, Safe Routes to Schools improvements and the possible search for property/design/construction of a new school. On his website, Tzifas also expresses his concerns about open School Board meetings, the number of school days and making San Carlos families first in school enrollment policies.
Adam Rak is a ten-year resident of San Carlos, married with three children. Two attend Brittan Acres and the third is in pre-school. “I am an active volunteer in both classrooms and also served on the recent Measure A committee,” Rak said, adding he recently rotated off the national board for Reading Partners, an educational non-profit that provides one to one literacy tutoring.
On his website, Rak writes about three major issues: bringing technology into the classroom, traffic safety at schools and dealing with capacity.
Incumbent Seth Rosenblatt lays out his concerns on his campaign site, which include managing the budget, the need for more facilities, improving transportation and safety and improving communications with parents.
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