Letter to the Editor: Wallach a Man of Integrity
I am troubled that the Jewish News has been turned into a forum for misinformation and character assassination. When the proposed sale of Eagle School was announced, residents opposed to the sale exercised their right to voice their opinions at a school board meeting. In covering resident’s objections to the sale, the Jewish News cited everything from process not being followed to concern over the potential buyer’s views and history.
Since residents who live in an area with many synagogues as well as a day school can’t object to an Islamic Community Center in their backyard without coming across as bigots, they instead focused on the “process” followed by the school board. However, since the courts have upheld the “process” followed by the board, sale opponents now claim that the closing of other schools was mishandled and that potential buyers were lined up to buy vacant school property only to be turned down by the board. Really? As a business owner in Farmington Hills and a resident in West Bloomfield I was unaware that that the demand for real estate in the city was so robust. Perhaps I misunderstood what all of the vacant store fronts, foreclosed homes and empty office buildings in the city really meant.
The past couple of years have been extremely difficult ones for anyone involved in the management of public schools. Declining enrollment coupled with unprecedented cuts in state funding, including the uncertainty of not knowing how much would paid per pupil when budgeting forced districts to make painful decisions to keep their fiscal houses in order. That is exactly what the Farmington School Board did.
The decision to close a school is a difficult one both on a practical as well as an emotional level and it is one that the board did not take lightly. I don’t expect everyone to agree with every decision that was made but what I find especially disturbing is the level of vitriol that has been directed at Howard Wallach who served as board president during this difficult period. As someone who has known Howard for 20 years and served with him on a number of volunteer boards in the Jewish community I can unequivocally state that Howard takes his responsibilities very seriously and has always acted with the utmost integrity in both public and private matters. Residents were very fortunate to have Howard leading the district at this critical juncture and would benefit from his continued leadership on the board. Vote for Howard Wallach!