In support of Superintendent Michael Buoniconti

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Published: 1/22/2020 9:04:15 AM

I have known Superintendent Michael Buoniconti for 13 years. We haven’t always agreed, but he is a great person and I support him. He is an effective, competent leader. His professionalism, integrity, and decency have been beyond reproach. He rescued our schools from financial catastrophe more than once. His work building the Rural Schools Coalition has been a major breakthrough toward achieving equitable funding for our districts. He has served his community and country with distinction and honor. We cannot afford to lose him.

I personally couldn’t care less who Michael may have had a relationship with. Provided it was consensual and without coercion or improper influence, whatever happened is none of my, the School Committee’s, or the public’s concern. It has no bearing on Michael’s ability to do his job.

Unfortunately, a different reality has unfolded. False rumors got spread. Petitions were signed and it’s curious how quickly that happened; almost as though there already existed a concerted effort by certain factions to destroy this man, even before the current incident. That isn’t news to anyone around here. Same people, same grudges, new pretext.

When this situation erupted, Michael emailed School Committee members, requesting we respect his privacy as he went through a tough divorce. Shame on whoever disrespectfully leaked that message. Shame on local media for divulging its contents beneath tabloid headlines, before any hearings or due process. I doubt you’d enjoy being treated likewise.

Western Massachusetts didn’t benefit from losing Stan Rosenberg, another official devoted to our area, yet ousted by those who derive unhealthy excitement from scandal. The same could be said of losing Michael. Remember, those throwing the biggest stones are often the biggest hypocrites.

Let’s stop this destructive, perversely self-righteous witch trial and come to our senses before we make an enormous mess.

Hussain A. Hamdan is a Hawley Selectman and Hawlemont School Committee Member.


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