In a new development of the Sandown Withdrawal Feasibility Study Committee established by the district, Co-chairman, Kelly Ward from Sandown, has resigned as co-chair. (Note: this is not the Sandown Study established by the Sandown BOS.) The school board chairman, Nancy Steenson, took it upon herself to issue this astonishing statement:
TO: Sandown Withdrawal Feasibility Study Committee
FROM: Nancy Steenson, Chair and Peter Bealo, Vice Chair
DATE: May 29, 2015
REFERENCE: Committee Officers
Due to the demands of serving as co-chair of the Sandown Withdrawal Feasibility Study
Committee and in light of current family and work obligations, Mr. Kelly Ward will no
longer be serving as co-chairman of the committee effective immediately. Mr. Ward will
remain on the committee as school board representative for the town of Sandown and in
doing so will remain committed to providing his very best to the citizens of Sandown and
the school district as a whole. Mr. Ward is highly regarded on the school board and on this
committee and we place high value on his contributions to the district as well as his
willingness to participate in this important study.
As appointing authority for this school board committee per RSA 195:25, and with the full
support of Mr. Bealo, my vice chair, I am appointing Mr. Rob Collins, school board
representative from the town of Danville as the Withdrawal Feasibility Study Committee
chairman. Mr. Collins is more than qualified to lead the committee’s charge as he is an
articulate, focused and organized chairman with a history of running effective and efficient
For clarification purposes, this is not a co-chair appointment, but a chairmanship. The
committee’s next point of order will be to select a new vice chair and secretary.
In closing, both Peter and I wish the committee every success in producing the feasibility
study report and look forward to our continued work as it relates to providing the very
best public education to the students of Atkinson, Danville, Plaistow and Sandown.
Once again, Mrs. Steenson is exceeding her authority. A chairman has no authority outside of meetings to take any action whatsoever without the vote of the entire school board. Furthermore, the committee has an existing co-chair: Cindy Buco from Sandown who by rights should now be the full chairman of the committee. Mr. Collins is ever-present and is parachuted in to situations when they are not going in the pre-approved direction. He instigates censures, forces resignations, steers deliberations, and generally fixes “problems.” He is the last person who should be chairing this committee. The Capital Improvement Plan Committee, which he also chairs, is creaking into oblivion. Perhaps he envisions that same fate for this committee.
This is an affront to Sandown whose own Cindy Buco should be leading this committee so that she can ensure that Sandown’s interests in a full exploration of the options available are respected. Mrs. Steenson should resign her position for repeatedly not knowing the limits of her authority.