(Patch is posting profiles of each of the candidates who responded to our questions).
PETER R. WAITZE, a Democrat, has been a Bensalem resident since 1980. He holds a BS degree from Suffolk University, where he majored in Mathematics. He serves on the Bensalem Gaming Advisory Board.
Waitze established a mentoring program for Robert K Shafer Middle School and volunteers in math classes for elementary and middle school grades.
What best qualifies you for a term on the Bensalem Township School Board?
My long standing commitment to improving the quality of education for all students in all grades. In addition to volunteering in classrooms, I have also made specific and time tested recommendations to the current school board to improve math text books.
What do you see as the big issues facing the district?
The big overall issue is one of professional management of both the finances and improving the curriculum. Both are in need of attention, which at the present time, is sorely lacking. If we want our students to be competitive, it is imperative that we improve their scholastic achievements.
If elected, how would you work to handle those issues?
At the present time, scholastic achievement is not seriously discussed. No one on the board knows what is happening in the classroom. When invited to see first-hand, they at first declined the invitation. They rely on second hand information and poor results follow. Good managers are hands-on managers.
What’s your position on the plans to spend $78 million renovating Bensalem High School?
I’m undecided. At present I am more concerned with the lagging scholastic achievement of our students as noted in all recent evaluations.
The public seems to have a degree of distrust of public officials following the recent scandal involving Bensalem Township School District current and former employees. If elected, how would you work to rebuild trust?
I have been working to improve trust. That is accomplished by being visible, honest to our community. I have been a contributor with published guest opinions to let people know what I am thinking and how I wish to proceed. My agenda is known to all who read my articles.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Nothing replaces first-hand knowledge. I have been and intend to continue to be in the classrooms to see what is going on and what needs to be done to improve our students’ scholastic achievements. They will be competing on a world-wide basis. They need to be ready to compete.