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Home Schools Rye Schools Board of Ed Q&A with Tom Stein, Board of Education Candidate

Q&A with Tom Stein, Board of Education Candidate

Welcome to the MyRye.com Q&A series with your seven (7) board of education candidates. Seven candidates are running for two open seats. The seven candidates are James Culyer, Vivek Kamath, Pooja Kotecha, John Leonard, Petra Nemeth, Mia Schultz and Tom Stein.

Election ballots will be mailed to voters automatically. You do not need to submit an absentee ballot application for this election (you do need to submit an absentee ballot application for the June 23rd primary elections). Ballots must be received in the school district offices by 5pm on June 9, 2020.

You will be voting on the proposed school budget as well as the board of education candidates.

Today we are pleased to present the MyRye.com Q&A with board of education candidate Tom Stein:

Tom Stein, Rye, NY Board of Education Candidate 2020

Your Name: Tom Stein

MyRye.com: Why are you running for school board?

Our schools are Rye’s most precious assets. I believe the best way I can serve my community is by bringing my professional experience (as an attorney, a business executive and having served on and advised several boards) to provide support, advice, independence and oversight to the School Administration and the City of Rye.

Why are you running for school board now?

In addition to the above, I learned that one of the open seats was from the only Board member who is an attorney. While the School Administration has outside attorneys, I know from experience that having an attorney on a Board can provide valuable internal support, which I can provide and in the immediate wake of Covid-19, which may bring novel challenges, laws and regulations, such expertise may be more necessary than ever.

Yes or No: did you support and vote for the $80 million school bond that passed in 2019?

Yes

Yes or No: do you support and plan to vote in favor of the current as-proposed school budget of $92 million going to vote on June 9th?

Yes

What are three ways Rye schools may need to adapt in the wake of COVID-19?

First, I want to say that as this is a fluid and evolving situation, I do not arrive with any preconceived notions of what must be done and would steep myself in all state and expert guidance and resources as they come in, as well as the needs and opinions of the community, and provide advice and make decisions on such basis. That being said, three possibilities include:

  1. Continuing to prepare for and improve remote learning capabilities and flexibility, both as a possible compliment and a substitution.
  2. Staggered schedules.
  3. Increased parent engagement and communication.

What are the three biggest opportunities / challenges facing the Rye schools over the next 3-5 years?

  1. Sticking the landing on the Bond Development; it is a massive project and tremendous opportunity and must be successfully managed.
  2. The long-term repercussions and changes that may come from Covid-19, which we will need to try to anticipate and adapt to expediently.
  3. Financial pressure: current events only make more likely the need for efficiency, financial responsibility and long-term planning.

What are the three biggest areas for cost containment with the Rye schools over the next 3-5 years?

  1. Long range planning and utilizing economies of scale: piecemeal efforts are more expensive 10 out of 10 times.
  2. Capitalizing on all available sources of state, or other, aid.
  3. Careful monitoring of the Bond Construction as there are opportunities for that to come in under budget.

What is your favorite book?

The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien

What are you watching these days?

The Mandalorian & Clone Wars (with the kids)
The Wire (re-watch – and it’s still the best thing ever put on television)

How many years have you lived in Rye?

This is our 3rd year.

Tom Stein’s social media

LinkedIn
Twitter
Facebook

Official bio provided to MyRye.com:

Tom Stein is in his third year in Rye and will have two children at Osborn in the fall, with a third at Rye Pres and Nature Center. An attorney and business executive, Tom is currently the Deputy General Counsel for CLEAR, where he leads legal operations for new verticals. He was previously with American Express where he had respective roles as a senior counsel, a global general manager and a business development executive. Prior to that, he was with the law firm of Proskauer Rose. He has served as a Board Member for the Terra Incognita Theater and a Manhattan co-op and has significant experience advising boards in a professional capacity. He has a JD from the New York University School of Law.

“Our schools are Rye’s most precious asset and I would welcome the opportunity to serve the community by bringing my professional experience to provide support, advice, independence and oversight to the School Administration and the City of Rye, especially in these challenging times. I have significant experience serving on and advising Boards and was additionally motivated to serve when I learned the School Board’s lone attorney would be stepping down, as I believe my legal expertise can be an asset for the school and community.”

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