Longtime Newhall School Board member hopes to bring experience to Hart District.
In November, the Santa Clarita Valley will head to the polls to decide who will hold three of the five seats on the Hart District Governing Board.
Suzan Soloman has cast her bid to win one of those seats.
Soloman is currently serving her tenth year on the Newhall School District Governing Board, a publicly elected position. She also holds a seat on the Hart District Measure SA Oversight committee and serves with the California School Board Association Delegate Assembly.
Now, with her sights set on a seat on the Hart District Board, Soloman says that her reasons for serving haven’t changed.
“The calling is pretty much the same as it was for Newhall,” Soloman told KHTS. “It’s to serve the community, and to be a voice at the table. There needs to be communication between the School District and the community, and there needs to be representation of the community in the School District. And that’s what Governing Board members do.”
As all schools are facing severe budgetary challenges these days, Soloman believes her experience in the Newhall School District can help provide seasoned insights to the Hart Board.
“In the Newhall School District we have been very proactive in planning our budget and forecasting the kinds of challenges that the School District faced. And we were able to maintain the integrity of our instructional program, our music program and our counseling program because we were able to plan for that,” she said. “The Hart district is probably a little more complicated that that, but to me the priority in the Hart district is to look at the budget and forecast out where we need to be and what our priorities are.
Part of that battle must include interaction with governmental officials, according to Soloman.
“In Sacramento, they’re polarized,” she said. “It’s our job to keep our legislators informed as to what is needed in the schools.”
On the home front, the community is acutely aware of is the emphasis on bringing a new high school to Castaic. Soloman believes this should be at the top of the priority list for the Hart district.
“The community of Castaic, like all the other communities the Hart district serves, needs to have a neighborhood school.”
Soloman went on to say that a school in Castaic is important for several reasons.
“I think it is important because of the pride that it would give Castaic to have their own high school. It’s important to create a balanced population and to create a safe learning environment where you’re not impacted and where strong instruction prevails.”
Of the three seats available in November’s election, one is held by Patricia A. Hanrion. Hanrion has publicly announced that she will not run for re-election and has endorsed Soloman.
The other two seats are held by Paul Strickland and Dennis King, who have yet to officially declare their intentions.
Local businessman and volunteer Joe Messina has announced that he will be running for a seat on the Hart District School Governing Board as well.