Also attending were Winchester Selectman Peter Haley, former Stoneham Selectmen Charlie Smith and Tony Kennedy, Stoneham Board of Assessors member Dick Mangerian, and Stoneham School Committee members Shelly MacNeill, Marie Christie and Dave Maurer.
A few people made speeches. One of my personal favorites was made by Wendy Smith who said Jason was ready to “get his hands dirty” fighting on behalf of public schools in the district. “Literally,” she added. “His hands were pretty dirty after spending an afternoon a few weeks ago pulling weeds at the middle school.”
During the speeches, more than 20 children played games and colored in coloring books, including Lewis’s own daughters Sophie, 9, and Jessie, 5.
Jason, who launched his campaign more than eight months ago, has cited education as one of his top legislative priorities along with local aid and healthcare. He cited cutbacks in programs in Stoneham and the needs of schools in the district as one of his key reasons for running.
To my mind, one of the most important moments of the night was when Jason said:
It is not OK for art and music to be slashed. It is not OK for team teaching at the middle school to be eliminated. It is not OK for high school sports to be on the chopping block. It is not OK to keep raising fees to keep public schools afloat. We must provide our schools with sufficient funding so they can offer a well-rounded curriculum, attract and retain great teachers, and provide our children with the quality education that they all deserve.
Jason also called for more local aid and more affordable quality healthcare. He also said he would work for “smart economic growth” noting Massachusetts’ “intellectual capital” and “dynamic economy.”
We must also promote research and innovation in industries like alternative energy and nanotechnology that will grow our economy, create jobs, and have a positive impact on our environment.
The campaign is excited to build on the momentum of the Mass Alliance endorsement (warning: PDF) to move this campaign forward.
I hope you’ll help keep the momentum going by volunteering on our campaign!
Full Disclosure: I’m working for the Lewis campaign as Deputy Campaign Manager.
Jason’s all about being a puppet for the teachers’ unions and the far left like the Mass State Socialists (member of mass alliance)
p>did he mention any issues local to Stoneham and Winchester?
p>I doubt it. Because he has no clue because the teachers’ unions have no clue. Nor do they care. It is all about more $$$$$ to hire more teachers whether they are needed or not.
p>BTW, toney wichester got more money from the state this year for schools while most others got a decrease.
p>Now that’s not fair.
Jason is concerned about the entire district, including Stoneham. And there have been serious cuts to the Stoneham schools. Cutting art, sports, etc. is in fact a local issue specific to Stoneham which is a major part of Jason’s district.
p>As to your comment regarding teacher’s unions, all I can say is that I’m not sure where you’re getting that from. I know that Jason supports and respects teachers. I know that he hopes to do everything he can to improve the quality of education in his district and across the country. But I don’t know why you think he’s somehow in the pocket of any one group.
p>Finally, for whatever it’s worth, I’m sure that the folks at the Harvard Business School (where Jason attended) and at the businesses he’s worked for will be really amused to learn that somebody thinks he’s a puppet for socialists somehow.
The School issues are HUGE local issues in Stoneham. They have been forced to make drastic program cutbacks.
For the record, art and music education in the Stoneham school district has been reduced to one class a week for half of the school year. The fee for participating in what’s left of our athletic program is going from $250 to $300 per sport with the per family cap going from $1000 to $1200. Our high school has been put on warning by the accreditation board. Over 40% of the teachers in the school system have less than 3 years experience because we can’t afford to pay a competitive salary and because of the constant threat of layoffs every year. Team teaching is a high priority for the School Committee but the funds to restore it have not been available.
p>Over 90 people turned out for the event on Sunday precisely because Jason has spent so much time here in Stoneham getting to know our issues. You should try it sometime.
and policies no tewachers were laid off. 9-% of budget is for salaries. Sports do not have to cut. It’s all about more money for more teachers. Jason is their puppet. Mass Alliance recruited and trained Jason. Manchurian jason.
so who’s your candidate, Ernie? Put your money where your mouth is.