We don’t know quite what to make of the recall effort taking place in Rowe, where, in a very short time, one woman has apparently worn out her welcome on the school board.
Lisa Miller, who joined the Rowe School Committee after winning an uncontested two-year term in 2011, now has become the target of a recall vote because her “participation on the School Committee is obstructing the delivery of education.”
If we didn’t know any better, you would picture Miller as a very difficult person, indeed.
But that may not be an accurate picture.
In truth, she is a mother of children in the district and the wife of Robert Clancy, the former principal at Rowe Elementary ... whose contract wasn’t renewed by Superintendent Michael Buoniconti for reasons that remain murky to the public to this day. That decision didn’t sit well with any number of residents and proved to be motivation for the town to see what kind of options it had when it came to its place in the school district and its relationship with the superintendent.
“I don’t know what to say about the recall. Nobody’s told me what the recall is about. … I’ve heard rumors, that people were told I ‘have baggage because of Bob,’” Miller told The Recorder in a recent story.
If the real reason behind the recall is, in fact, Miller’s marriage, it’s a truly foolish one. Who she is married to wasn’t exactly a secret when she was elected. And the fact that Miller might possess certain views on education, the school or its standing in the district can’t have been a surprise to others in town, either. And the fact that she ran uncontested for the seat, says that residents didn’t seem to have a problem with having her join the school board.
So what’s changed?
For one, the makeup of the School Committee.
That has created an opportunity for residents with very strong opinions about the direction of the school to try to regain control. And it comes at a time when Rowe is finding its way after a fire destroyed the school, thus providing more motivation for those interested in running things.
What the public is seeing, once again, is the sort of small-town politics where you can become a personal target — not necessarily because of what you’re doing but because of who you are allegedly associated with.
It all doesn’t exactly put Rowe in the best light.
Rowe residents have a couple of months to think about this before the Dec. 1 recall, and we’d urge all involve to sit back, cool down, and act in the best interests of the school and its pupils.