Meet Norwich’s school board candidates

NORWICH – Five candidates are vying for the two board of education seats up for grabs in the Norwich City School Districts. Residents of the district will have the chance to meet each of these individuals and hear their stance on issues facing the district at a Meet the Candidates event tonight sponsored by Norwich’s Parent Teacher Student Association. The event will begin at 6 p.m. in the Stanford Gibson Elementary School Auditorium.

The two school board seats open are those currently occupied by board members Thomas L. Morrone and Priscilla M. Johnson, both of whom are seeking reelection. They are being challenged by former board president Robert I. Patterson, Chenango County District Attorney Joseph A. McBride and newcomer Erica L. Barrows.

Meet the Candidates (in the order they will appear on the ballot):

Erica L. Barrows

Norwich High School graduate Erica Barrows is making her first run for a seat on the Norwich School Board. The 35-year old Norwich native is a lifelong resident of Chenango County. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Albany and has a background in social work.

“I am running because I feel it is a good way to network, meet people, and serve a community need all at the same time,” she said.

Barrows served on the Opportunities for Chenango board of directors from 2003-2006, and is a volunteer tutor with Literacy Volunteers of Chenango County.

“Over the years, I have donated time to many worthy causes and I see serving on the school board a way to continue this tradition.”

She cites budget cuts as the most pressing concern for the Norwich City School District.

“The way I look at it is that the impending budget cuts would most definitely have an unnecessary negative impact on student education and potentially limit future opportunities,” she explained.

She says that she herself benefited from the district’s special services program, one of the areas which could face reductions.

“The educational foundation that I received in Norwich has allowed me to achieve many things. I would hate to see other students lose out on similar educational experiences,” Barrows said.

“I feel that it is important to show my fellow residents that despite my physical limitations, I can offer my skills and insights to others successfully,” she concluded.

Thomas L. Morrone

Tom Morrone took his seat on the Norwich City School Board immediately following last year’s election, when he was elected to fill a vacant one-year term on the board. As that term nears its end, Morrone says he has learned a great deal during and feels he has more to contribute. A 1960 graduate of Norwich

“I would like to serve a full three-year term,” he said, of his decision to run for re-election.

Not only is Morrone a product of the Norwich City School System himself, but he is also the proud father of three Norwich grads.

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