Your View: Silberberg is a champion for local schools

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By Eileen Cassidy-Rivera, Co-chairwoman, Friends of Allison Silberberg (File photo)

To the editor:
A couple of weeks ago, our 9-year-old daughter, Carmen, looked at our mail and saw a flyer we received from the Write-In Euille campaign, asserting “our kids can’t afford Allison Silberberg to be their mayor.” The flyer was a blatant misrepresentation of the vice mayor’s record on education and incorrectly attacks her voting record on funding for public education.

Carmen picked up the flyer, read it from front to back and said to me, “Really? These guys have no idea what they’re talking about.”

This comes from a fourth grader who has known Silberberg her whole life and has always known her to be enthusiastic about education. In fact, the vice mayor has taken a special interest in all of our kids, frequently asking them how they are doing in school, what their favorite subjects are and always encouraging them to do their best.

As a former Alexandria school board member, I never questioned Silberberg’s commitment to education. Over the past three years as vice mayor, she voted for full funding of every school budget. She understands how critical it is to dedicate resources to public education. She is active in the local school community and tutored children at MacArthur Elementary School. The Alexandria Political Action Committee for Education endorsed her candidacy for
mayor.

Silberberg understands the importance of education because she is a former teacher. At the height of the crack wars in D.C., she launched and managed a non-profit called “Lights, Camera, Action!” to mentor and teach youth and help them reach their potential through film. Seven out of the eight participants went to college. She also was an adjunct professor at American University, where she taught undergraduate and graduate students for more than three years.

As mayor, Silberberg will continue to push for excellence in our schools. She will continue to support early education. She will continue to work with the school board and Superintendent Alvin Crawley to keep our class sizes small and manageable. She will seek more tutoring resources. With her support of the National Science Foundation’s move to Alexandria, she will find ways to help students with their core science and math skills. These are just a few examples of Silberberg’s vision for education in Alexandria.

I am proud to endorse Allison Silberberg to be Alexandria’s next mayor. I have no doubt she will continue to be our city’s champion for education. Even a fourth grader gets that.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. This all sounds good, but it takes tax revenue to fund small class sizes, etc., and a really stong grasp of fiscal policy. Silberberg, in her brief time on city council, has simply not demonstrated that she has the skills in these crucial areas. I sincerely hope that Ms. Silberberg will not be elected today and will, of course, be writing in Euille for Mayor in just a few minutes.

  2. Ms. Silberberg for sure!

    I write as a library advocate. Under Mayor Euille and like-minded people, Alexandria’s funding for library books in recent years had been horribly low per capita compared to the national standards..

    When other library advocates and I spoke up, Ms. Silberberg listened. Mayor Euille has many fine traits and I find him extremely likable and wish him well, but he never followed up on this issue to the extent that Vice Mayor Silberberg has. Del Pepper also cared. If you want to know how horrible things had gotten, see:

    https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=site%3Alibrarycity.org%20alexandria

    And look at such items as this one on the city manager’s $245K salary (later increased!) vs. library spending:

    http://www.librarycity.org/245k-city-manger-in-alexandria-va-once-again-threatens-already-meager-library-budget-time-for-a-literacy-audit-of-amazons-most-well-read-city/

    Under Mayor Euille, ex-City Manager Rashad Young’s total salary and generous benefits added up to about the same as the library’s entire materials budget! Mayor Euille wasn’t the only one responsible for this. But he certainly was among those in favor of these unfortunate priorities.

    Today the materials budget is higher than before, and I, for one, am grateful to Vice Mayor Silberberg for pushing so hard for these improvements.

    I know. We need to watch our spending and work for SMART development. But here’s a question. How can we attract business and education-minded young families–to the extent we could–if we spend substandard amounts on books? It’s just one issue of many. But a candidate’s record on this will say plenty about values.

    David Rothman
    Long-time Alexandria resident and Cofounder of LibraryCity.org