Pugliese for District E

The only contested race for the School District 51 Board of Education pits two Palisade residents against each other to replace Ron Rowley, who is term limited. We believe both Greg Mikolai and Rose Femia Pugliese would serve the school district and their constituents well. (A third candidate, Amber Sigler, has withdrawn from the race.)

Our endorsement goes to Pugliese because of her willingness to immerse herself in the details of school district operations and to challenge the way things are now being done.

Pugliese, a Palisade attorney and Long Island native, moved to this area with her husband 2 1/2 years ago. Although they don’t have any children, she has jumped into the campaign for the school board with the enthusiasm of the most exuberant soccer mom.

Earlier this week, Pugliese reported she was working her way through the district’s budget, looking for places where money could be spent more efficiently. She also is eager to get a spot on the School Board’s budget committee if elected, not the sort of assignment freshman board members usually seek.

When people questioned her about the new math curriculum the district is implementing, Pugliese scheduled a meeting with folks at the school district in charge of the math program so she could better understand it before taking a position.

Although she is aware that District 51 already has programs for encouraging career education for those who aren’t college-bound and business-education partnerships, Pugliese hopes to push the district to do more in those areas. And she wants to see more emphasis on science, technology and math programs, as well as more efforts to attract females into programs that have traditionally been dominated by males.

Mikolai is a production coordinator for KRMJ TV in Grand Junction. He has two sons in District 51 schools and a wife who serves as a kindergarten aide and a part-time art teacher. He is eager to work with school administrators as they seek to build a more consistent curriculum throughout the district. And he wants to ensure there are adequate numbers of teachers in classrooms so we don’t exacerbate crowding problems that exist at some schools.

Regardless of which candidate is elected to the board, he or she will likely join other board members and administrators in the difficult tasks of making deeper budget cuts. We believe Pugliese will dig deeper into the nitty gritty of the budget and other issues and will be willing to ask difficult questions of administrators.

Vote for Rose Femia Pugliese for District E.


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