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Stolz, Ballard Clash Over Willow Lane Busing

A motion by East Penn School Director Julian Stolz to retain busing in the 2013-14 school year for those Willow Lane students being bused this year was defeated by a 6-3 vote at Monday’s School Board meeting.

The greater part of Monday night’s East Penn Board of School Directors meeting was all about Willow Lane Elementary School and the busing of its students.

It began with a public comment period during which several parents of Willow Lane children addressed the board with reasons that Willow Lane should not become a walking school with the start of the 2013-2014 school year.

After that, Superintendent Thomas L. Seidenberger shared the findings of an excrutiatingly detailed transportation study, designed to shed light on many transportation concerns in the district, including next steps at Willow Lane.

All of that led up to debate on a motion by School Director Julian Stolz to retain busing in the 2013-2014 school year for those Willow Lane students being bused this year.

Dissention followed when board president Charles Ballard didn’t pull any punches in explaining why he would be voting against Stolz’s motion:

“First of all, I find the concept of attempting, before we have enough information to direct the administration to do something of this nature, premature and unwise.

“I find it highly offensive personally that the person declaring to be conservatively principled is willing to throw those principles under the bus and support a motion to spend money for a very small group without having all of the facts in place to determine those expenditures to be warranted or wise.

“The information provided in the transportation study provides different options that should be considered. This is nothing more than a pandering attempt to obtain votes that should not have been countenanced by a sitting school board member,” he said.

Stolz immediately shot back sharp words of his own, declaring it his right to do so because of the “personal nature of the comments” made by Ballard.

“I find it interesting that the very people who use children for political gain are willing to throw them quite literally under the bus,” he said. “I am a conservative, but I am willing to stop and look at what we are doing and make sure that when we do it, we do it right and not simply rubber-stamping the administration’s agenda.”

School directors Francee Fuller and Kenneth Bacher both said that they would like to see Stolz’s motion tabled until they had time to review the administration’s transportation study and its recommendations.

Bacher said: “I don’t like the idea of singling out parts of our population for special treatment. If I were to vote for such a proposal, I’d like to see that it be phrased in a way that applies to all of our students, not just Willow Lane.”

The motion was ultimately defeated by a 6-3 vote with directors Stolz, Lynn Donches and Michael Policano voting in favor of Stolz’s motion.

JackL February 24, 2013 at 02:42 AM
Oh one more thing, after your kids come home with some dog doo on their shoes and it ends up all over the house…maybe you’ll start picking up the crap…or better yet...maybe one of the kids that realize they can walk...possibly even run will leave you a present burning on your porch.
Janet Persing February 24, 2013 at 09:10 PM
JackL, Well Said!
Janet Persing February 24, 2013 at 09:14 PM
Perhaps we can revisit the 4-way stop sign intersections--at both ends of Willow Elementary--that no one (from NY/NJ) knows how to navigate...and their kids are the ones in "danger" from their fellow NY/NJ. And I won't even address litter! Thanks for bringing your lifestyle to us. Now you have to live in it.
Janet Persing February 24, 2013 at 09:15 PM
Unfortunately, so do we, the natives. So, please clean up your mouth, act, and behavior. Quit whining and be responsible for your progeny. Teach them properly and the rest of civil society won't have a problem.
Janet Persing February 24, 2013 at 09:30 PM
Correct and factual point. Thank you!

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