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Alan Earnshaw Announces Run for East Penn School Board

Alan Earnshaw, vice president of the East Penn Board of School Directors, announced recently that he will seek a fourth term on the board.

East Penn School Board Vice President Alan Earnshaw recently announced that he will seek a fourth term on the East Penn Board of School Directors.

Earnshaw has been a East Penn School Board member since 2001, having been reelected in 2005 and 2009. He served as president of the board for two years and has been vice president for more than five years.

Earnshaw has respresented East Penn on the Joint Operating Committee of the Lehigh Career & Technical Institute (LCTI) since December 2007, serving as the vice chair for two years and the chair since December 2011.

Currently in his 12th year on the board, Earnshaw was first elected when his oldest daughter was in first grade. Now she is a senior at Emmaus High School and plans to enter college in the fall.

“East Penn has given my daughter an outstanding education and she is well prepared for college,” Earnshaw said in a prepared statement. “My goal is to prepare all East Penn students for their future, whether they plan to attend college, pursue further vocational training, enter the work force or join the military.”

Eric February 25, 2013 at 12:03 AM
Best of luck to Mr. Earnshaw. He cares about quality education and being a good steward of tax dollars. More importantly, he understands the need for balance among these two concepts . He has my vote.
Rob Hamill February 25, 2013 at 01:48 PM
The teacher's union can breath a sigh of relief now that they know they can demand anything and Alan will say OK. Maybe he can even get another award from the Teachers union for another early bird contract that screwed everyone except his union friends. Neville chamberlain is his role model.
careless fills February 25, 2013 at 03:14 PM
This exerpt from an excellent piece by Joseph Curl reminded me of the annual "the sky is falling routine" we see at the EPSD budget hearings: "http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/feb/24/unoriginal-amateur-hour-starring-barack-obama/ Every year, we’d gather at the county’s McCoart Administration Center for the annual budget kabuki dance. And quite a dance it was. Every year, the county staffers would ask for much more money — 9, 10, 12 percent increases. The school system, too. Teachers, union officials and county gadflies would pack the county building for the show. While the debate was different each year, every time — every single time — one thing would occur: County officials and school administrators would paint the bleakest picture possible should they receive even one penny less than demanded. The county would bus in dozens of mentally ill children, warning of cuts to work programs. The schools would do the same, threatening big cuts to special-education programs. The county would assert that some parks and lakes would need to be closed to save money; schools warned that after-school sports programs would be impossible without the additional money. So, every year, the county supervisors would acquiesce and pass the budgets almost exactly as proposed. I was always amazed at how simplistic and ham-handed the process was — propose an exorbitant budget, trot in the downtrodden, get your cash."
Jane S February 25, 2013 at 03:23 PM
Thank you Mr. Earnshaw for running for school board. We've had enough of the anti-education SEPTIC clowns who are ruining our schools. You have my support, and the support of everyone who cares about our future.
Rob Hamill February 25, 2013 at 04:29 PM
Jane S , Don't you mean, The support of everyone who supports a $100 grand for life pension extortion scheme, starting at age 55 for the next 40 years, from the hapless taxpayers? Yeah strong Democrats for bankrupting our communities.
Alan Earnshaw February 25, 2013 at 05:59 PM
Mr. Hamill, As we discussed last week, the pension is a state-mandated benefit. It cannot be declined at the school board level. I completely agree that we need serious pension reform in the Commonwealth, and I would prefer to shift completely to a defined contribution style of retirement benefit (similar to 401k plans). I have personally lobbied my current and former legislators in favor of pension reform. They are all Republicans (Wonderling, Mensch, Reichley, and Mackenzie), and not one of them has brought forward legislation to address the issue. I'd have to characterize pension reform as a bi-partisan failure, since neither party has made any progress in addressing it.
Alan Earnshaw February 25, 2013 at 06:05 PM
Mr. Hamill, I have never once said OK to everything any of our unions requested, including the teachers' union. For everything we gave them, they gave concessions back to us. That's the way labor negotiations work, for good or ill. As I have told you on several occasions, I have never received an award from the teachers' union. The union itself was given an award for excellence in communication from PSEA (the state-level teachers' union), and they presented it to the board for us to hang in the board room. I was president of the board when they received the most recent award (they received similar awards twice previously). We placed the plaque on the wall of our board room, alongside several other awards our employees have won. We are proud of our employees' accomplishments and happy to recognize their achievements, just as we delight in honoring our students when they excel.
Alan Earnshaw February 25, 2013 at 06:07 PM
Thank you, Jane. I appreciate your support!
Alan Earnshaw February 25, 2013 at 06:07 PM
Thank you, Eric. I appreciate your support!
Alan Earnshaw February 25, 2013 at 06:09 PM
If you're interested in learning more, my campaign web site is http://www.ElectEarnshaw.org. I also maintain a web site that covers the issues in East Penn, http://www.AlanEarnshaw.com.
Matthew Mull February 25, 2013 at 06:44 PM
What is your stance on bussing at Willow Lane?
Rob Hamill February 25, 2013 at 07:46 PM
MR Earnshaws' protestations would be much more believable if the majority of support did NOT come from local and out of district teacher union members. Many of us taxpayers feel that we have the fox in the henhouse with Mr Earnshaw in our house.
Giovanni Landi February 25, 2013 at 08:47 PM
Mr. Earnshaw, From what I understand the pension is state-mandated for current employees. I believe you can negotiate the next teachers contract to provide only a defined contribution style of retirement benefit for all new employees. Would you support offering this type of plan to new employees?
optimist February 25, 2013 at 09:30 PM
Hammill not long ago you said it was the official position of teacher unions to elimate bussing in PA, and in the 90's you said the population in Lower mac would not grow therefore the district should refrain from school construction. So how believeable are you? Somebody named Emmaus Mom asked you for evidence on the bussing comment and we are all still waiting for that transporation study Hamill. Or will that be Soaring Eagle again if you decide to run for another elected office? Thanks for the laughs. Let me guess, you are going to say I'm a union guy payed to post comments on a blog right?
Alan Earnshaw February 26, 2013 at 08:21 AM
Mr. Landi, Unfortunately, that's not the case. Here's some information on the PSERS web site that explains eligibility for participation in the pension program: http://www.psers.state.pa.us/NewtoPSERS/qualifying.htm. It is voluntary for new employees, but we cannot negotiate away their right to participate. There is a PA Supreme Court decision that says you cannot reduce the pension benefits of current employees; perhaps that was what you were remembering. Unless that decision is overturned, pension reform will, therefore, need to start with new employees, not existing employees.
Matthew Mull February 27, 2013 at 02:42 PM
Mr. Earnshaw - can you let me know your stance on continuing busing to the Willow Lane school?
Emmaus Mom February 27, 2013 at 06:09 PM
Thank You optimist for remembering my request. It has been a while and I forgot about it:) Yes, Mr. Hamill, please back up your comments. I'm waiting for credible information regarding your claims.
Alan Earnshaw March 01, 2013 at 05:44 AM
Mr. Mull, I do not support having different standards for different schools. The standards we apply in Emmaus and Alburtis should also apply in Lower Macungie Township; the number of students affected is irrelevant. Those criteria include distance to school, presence or absence of sidewalks, PennDOT-designated dangerous roadways, and railroad crossings. I am open to considering changing the distance limits for walkers. Some have suggested 0.75 miles instead of 1.5 miles, and I look forward to discussing this in more detail in a future board meeting, including the budgetary implications for these changes. Please note that I would only support a change that would apply to all district students, not just for the students at one school. There are some enabling safety improvements that need to be made before we increase walking at Willow Lane. Those include on-site improvements and procedure changes, school zone speed limits and signage, crossing guards, and possibly sidewalk upgrades. The district and the township will work together on these issues, and until they are complete, I will not support a switch away from busing. The Superintendent made it clear on Monday that this is also his position and always has been, as shown by the continued busing service provided to students at Willow Lane.

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