Marilyn Wasilewski Resigns From Southern Regional Board of Education

Aug 30, 2017

The Southern Regional Board of Education’s Aug. 23 meeting had a noticeably different feel to it than most during the previous 16 years – Marilyn Wasilewski’s nameplate was missing. But it wasn’t a mere coincidence. The longtime board member resigned on Friday, Aug. 18, according to Superintendent Craig Henry.

“Marilyn was an outstanding board member and a pleasure to work with,” said Henry, who explained that Wasilewski left her post on the basis that her grandson, Dan, was slated to be hired as a full-time teacher – a development that had occurred during recent weeks.

“In whatever capacity she was serving, Marilyn was informed, knowledgeable and diligent. Her recommendations and decisions were always student- and program-oriented, yet grounded in fiscal responsibility. Of Marilyn’s many endearing qualities, what I particularly admired is that you always know where you stand with Marilyn. She says what she means and means what she says.”

According to Henry, legalities are such that a candidate being considered as a full-time teacher cannot be hired if a family member is a sitting board member. Because of some adjustments over the summer, a faculty opening led to Dan Wasilewski, who had been substitute teaching and an assistant coach with the ice hockey program, applying for the position. Once Henry and the Southern hiring committee decided to offer the position to her grandson, Marilyn Wasilewski was obligated to step away from the school board upon his acceptance of the position. The board approved his position as a social studies teacher during last week’s meeting.

“When Marilyn learned Dan was a leading candidate for the position, she insisted on stepping away,” Henry said. “She did not want to be an impediment to Dan’s professional aspirations.”

Henry said that throughout her tenure, Wasilewski served one term as board president and one term as board vice president. She was the chairwoman of the capital projects committee while also serving on the negotiations committee, the personnel committee and the finance committee.

“Marilyn’s was a strong voice on the board,” Henry said. “Her thoughtfulness, intellect and commitment to the district has been instrumental in our district’s ongoing ascent toward distinction.”

Wasilewski’s seat on the board will remain vacant until the board appoints a new member, according to board President Kevin Lyons. He expects the board to begin discussions on filling the spot during the coming weeks. Whoever is appointed will remain on the board until next year’s school board election.

Meanwhile, Wasilewski remains on the Long Beach Island Board of Education as a representative from Barnegat Light. She was re-elected last November.

Also during last week’s meeting, the board approved stipends for most of the high school’s winter and spring sports coaches, as well as the hiring of new athletic trainer Nick Scaramazza, who will fill the role left behind by former longtime trainer Joe Caucino, who retired following the spring season after some 30 years in the district.

— David Biggy

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