It’s always good to see citizens choose to get involved in their community, and that’s the case in District 24, where two newcomers are on the ballot for the Board of Education.
This year, there are three seats up, with incumbents Anthony Iadevaio and Larry Trogel seeking re-election, and newcomers John Maier and Stephen Rubenstein also looking to join the board. Because this is an at-large election, with the top three vote-getters winning, there will be at least one new face next year.
We believe that Iadevaio and Trogel should retain their seats. Iadevaio has been on the board for 33 years and brings a wealth of knowledge to the position. He has seen numerous changes in education in the past three decades, and is well-suited to help guide the district in this era of new curriculum, new tests, new teacher evaluations and new financial mandates.
Iadevaio has also served on the high school board for many years. We like the fact that this year, as president, he tried to convince his fellow trustees to hold off on adopting the budget until after state aid numbers were finalized. Unfortunately, few others agreed. He also provided members of the public ample opportunity to speak up on this year’s budget cuts.
Trogel, who has been on the District 24 board for 12 years and the Central High School District board for half that time, is a solid trustee who has shown he can take on leadership roles with ease. Two years ago, as co-chairman of the boards’ negotiations committee, he helped finalize a teachers contract that had a hard salary freeze this year, offering the four Valley Stream districts much relief in financially treacherous times.
Now the choice comes down to who should fill the third seat, which is open due to the impending departure of long-term board member Frank Nuara.
There is not a lot of separation between Maier and Rubenstein. Both have a strong grasp of the issues facing education. Both are experienced PTA leaders — Maier is the current co-president of the William L. Buck School PTA, and Rubenstein is immediate past president of the Brooklyn Avenue School PTA, a position he held for two years.