This year, there were six candidates of color running for the East Ramapo school board. However, three candidates did not reach out to the public at all. The one thing we knew about Charles, Germain and Corado, was that their campaign was being backed by Kalman Weber’s South East Taxpayers Association, an anti-tax, pro-Yeshiva organization. These candidates skipped the NAACP candidates forum. Instead, Bernard Charles chose to attend the anti-Internet rally where he handed out Yiddish campaign literature.
The public school community was suspicious of the motives of this slate of candidates because they refused to return calls to the press and made implausible promises to restore almost every program cut over the past five years without any specific plans. The district is going into its third year of budget deficits. The state was forced to get involved with fiscal oversight of next year’s budget, due to the incompetence of the board and administration to manage the district’s finances. What are the new trustees secret plans? Is their plan to sell as many school buildings as possible, leaving our children to suffer even more in overcrowded, poorly maintained buildings as a temporary fix?
Bernard Charles voted for Patrick Farm during his brief three-week stint on the Ramapo Planning Board as did his wife, Town Councilwoman Brendel Logan Charles, on several occasions. In addition to Patrick Farm providing segregated housing for the Orthodox community, which is illegal, this unbridled growth will further create an imbalance between the public school and private school community, further putting our communities in competition for the same dwindling resources. Thankfully, the public school community was not fooled by these Trojan Horse candidates. The real public school candidates, Robert Forrest, Eustache Clerveaux and Margaret Tuck won by large margins in the polling locations not controlled by the bloc. We will be watching these new trustees with a very critical eye and holding them accountable for every vote.