March 2, 2022 Submitted By Alyson Anderson
Since announcing my candidacy for the Hingham School Committee, I have been amazed by the many messages of support I have received from parents, teachers and community members I have worked and volunteered with for over a decade. You never fully realize the number of lives you have touched or how many people appreciate you until you are the one asking for support! To say that I am humbled by the number of people who have reached out would be an understatement. Admittedly, the number one question I’m asked is “WHY would you want to do this right now?”
Speaking with these neighbors and friends evokes in me the feeling of community that I associate with the Hingham that I have cherished since my own childhood. However, while I have been blessed with support and encouragement for my candidacy, I also see the stark contrast of divisiveness within our community regarding recent decisions by our current School Committee. While I value those Committee members that have given so much of their time and energy to our children and our schools, the recent years have also brought to the forefront frustrations within our community. Watching this from behind a screen (literally) has inspired me to do something about it.
I am a private person, and running for public office is not something I ever personally envisioned doing. Although I have been an active community member and school volunteer for more than a decade, I have typically worked behind the scenes. However, I am a firm believer in public education — I attended Hingham public schools (you may remember me as Aly Tesler) and I am now a parent of three current students, one at South Elementary School, one at Hingham Middle School and one at Hingham High School. Over the years, I have worked tirelessly, rarely saying no to an opportunity to help. But I can no longer sit back quietly. It’s time to step up and help our community heal and work together. While there are many places where I could direct my energy, for me there is no more important work to be done than that which affects our children and our schools.
The last couple of years has brought renewed engagement to our schools. However, as a community, we must remain involved going forward to ensure budget needs are met and our schools evolve to meet the learning needs of each and every child. As a town, we have many financial priorities, and we need to find a path forward where we can fund our schools’ current and future endeavors while simultaneously addressing our town’s other municipal needs. Our School Committee should interact with the community as well as work with our Select Board to ensure that all decisions are made with a view to the future and our town’s sustainable budget plans.
I believe that my background in marketing and communications will foster transparency in our School Committee and its operation. I will insist on clear and consistent communications across the district and promote a better understanding of school policies and decisions with compassion and collaboration. It is important that we work together to make our schools a better place and a welcoming environment for all. As such, I am honored to have been selected to join the Hingham Public Schools Strategic Planning Committee, where we will help onboard the incoming Superintendent and provide her with a tactical roadmap for our school system. This work will be critical to provide her guidance for what our community wants to accomplish in our schools and prepare her for success in her role.
While I am actively engaged in the schools right now, I have also been an active contributor over the past 12 years across all levels of our schools and in our town. I sat on the South Elementary School Council and currently sit on the High School Council. I co-chaired the Cultural Enrichment Committee, 5th Grade Leadership Club and Green Team at South Elementary. At the middle school, I have taken an active role in planning both school-wide and grade-level events. I am also a sitting board member of the Hingham Music Parents Association. Furthermore, I am a member of the Hingham Unity Council and have been appointed to the Cleaner Greener Hingham Committee. Professionally, I mentor start-up businesses through the BUzz Lab at Boston University, work as a consultant for startup businesses in the retail industry, and provide pro-bono consulting for PennPac through my alumni association. I also conduct interviews for my alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, and am a committee member for our 25th reunion.
After living in the Midwest for five years, my family and I relocated to my hometown of Hingham, and we have lived here for 14 years. I have a BA from the University of Pennsylvania, an MBA from the University of Chicago, and a preference to never again live more than a few miles from the beach.
I can’t wait to continue the conversations and hear from all of you. This is the time to stay focused and engaged. We can’t back down. Let’s move Hingham schools forward together.
For strong transparent communication
For making every student feel they belong
For a strategic plan to propel our budget goals
For moving Hingham forward
This May, I ask for one of your three votes for the School Committee so I can continue to work and advocate for your families.
For more information please visit: alyson4hingham.com