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BC sees five candidates for two seats

If elected, what do you hope to accomplish?

I have no agenda beyond maintaining our current standards throughout this downturn without further burdening the taxpayers. There are no easy answers to this. One thing we need to do is to put more pressure on the state regarding unfunded mandates.

What is you opinion of the 2010-11 school budget?

Considering the loss of state aid, I'm impressed that the proposed budget kept the tax increase down to less than 4 percent. However, I am distressed by the loss of teachers.

What would you bring to the school board?

My work experiences as a prosecutor and an arbitrator have relied on my ability to evaluate facts and make difficult decisions. I also bring the perspectives of a literacy volunteer, the special needs community and youth athletics.

Free response

Academics and athletics are not mutually exclusive. My kids are into sports. But we need to rethink how we finance them. If the booster clubs and other groups get involved in how to either cut their own budgets or raise the difference, everyone gets a better result.

Michael Cooper

A resident of Bethlehem for 21 years, I am Director of Publications, Rockefeller Institute of Government, University at Albany. My wife, Laura, is a Special Education teacher. I have two sons: Brian, graduating college in May, and Alex, graduating from BCHS in June. I was actively involved in the Hamagrael PTA and editor of the Middle School and High School newsletters. I have been a Board member with Bethlehem Youth Hockey and Varsity Hockey Boosters (President the last two years). I served the last three years on the Consistory of Delmar Reformed Church, last year as Head Deacon.

Why are you running for school board?

Having been a participant in the budget forums during the last two years, I believe the crisis in funding for education is an ongoing issue that requires active participation by the stakeholders and citizens to ensure that funding cuts do not deny our youth of the education they deserve.

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