April 4, 2022 Submitted by Nes Correnti
I was walking down by Hingham Harbor the other day. The moorings are in, Hingham’s sure sign of Spring and the hope that comes with the season. The worst of the Covid storm is behind us now. As a parent, spouse, child to an aging parent, business owner and, simply, as an adult, I felt its weight alongside you. As an elected official, I experienced sleepless nights concerned for our students and staff, and carried the frustration as variant after variant slowed our progress. Yet, despite the challenges of the past two years, I am committed and possess the endurance to continue my work on the Hingham School Committee. It will be my honor to apply my earned knowledge and experience to continue to move our schools forward towards our collective goal of providing an excellent education for all of our students.
Together, we are chartering the course for Hingham Public Schools and its hope for renewed stability. The next few years are critical and exciting for our district as we welcome and support our new Superintendent, Dr. Margaret Adams; build the new Foster Elementary School; implement the district’s strategic plan; and fill newly created leadership positions. While we weathered the storm, we still face challenges: COVID-related learning loss; continued concerns over student, family, and educator well-being exacerbated by the pandemic; on-boarding two new elementary principals; orienting a new Business Director; and crafting a sustainable, fully-funded budget with both the new Director and Superintendent.
I am the person for this job.
As the only licensed CPA School Committee member and candidate, I possess the ability to think independently and abstractly; communicate complicated concepts in simpler terms; work collaboratively to build consensus; research, analyze and audit complex budgets; review policies and historical perspectives to find solutions; and ask hard questions to gain a deeper understanding of the organizations I support. I embrace change and evolution to build and improve processes. By definition, an accountant is accountable. I pride myself on my accountability and honesty.
I joined the Hingham School Committee in April 2019 and was appointed to its newly created Finance Subcommittee. With fresh eyes, I combed through years of previous budgets, critically examined the HPS budget as compared to our 19 benchmark towns, and most importantly, met with and listened to parents, educators, students, and citizens to understand their needs. This work enabled me to frame a compelling proposal, facilitate a consensus and build support for a budget increase. Through your engagement and your support, this extraordinary commitment to our schools and investment in our students garnered unanimous support at Town Meeting. I am deeply proud of our community’s accomplishment and was honored to contribute my personal and professional skills to help the School Committee and Town make this happen.
Following Town Meeting, I was appointed to the Sustainable Budget Task Force, serving alongside dedicated Town officials to make recommendations on how best to meet the financial needs of all Town departments. As a result of the extraordinary work of the collective Task Force, the Select Board and Advisory Committee fully adopted our recommendations in March 2022. I am, again, honored and proud I was able to contribute my professional training and personal skills. As the School Committee representative to the Task Force, I hope I can continue this important work.
Looking towards our horizon, my sails are pointed towards three key areas:
- Sustainable financial planning to support the needs of all of our students. My experience on the Finance Subcommittee, the Sustainable Budget Task Force, and years as a CPA uniquely qualify me to lead this charge.
- Student wellbeing and safety. I believe we can, and must do more to support the social-emotional wellbeing of our students. Now more than ever, we must provide and promote activities, options and tools for students to relieve stress and become more emotionally resilient.
- Supporting and orienting our new Superintendent, Business Director and other new leaders in the HPS organization so that they are poised for success and achievement. My institutional knowledge, as well as the strong relationships I’ve built across the district and through the town will be key in keeping the waters calm during this critical period of immense transition.
Yes, the storm of the past two years has been incredibly stressful, frustrating, and unnerving for all of us Hingham Harbormen. I spent hundreds of hours meeting and speaking with parents and community members to listen and hear their perspectives. They were invaluable as I considered the many unique decisions School Committees were called upon to make. I am grateful to all who reached out. Hingham is incredibly fortunate our ship has amazing teachers and staff at its helm, educating our children; engaged parents and caregivers; townspeople who value education; and students who remind me every single day why I volunteer my time. It isn’t always easy; it isn’t always popular; but I have never shied away from difficult work. I would be honored to be entrusted with your vote for re-election to the Hingham School Committee on May 14.