Festive Atmosphere Ushers in New School Board Members
Friends, family and supporters celebrate the swearing in of Kathleen Angelucci, Scott Sweeney and Tim Stultz – Cobb County’s newest Board of Education members.
Appetizers, fruit and desserts donated by friends of the new board members welcomed guests to the celebratory atmosphere.
Cameras clicked frequently, handshakes came easily and hugs were the norm as family, friends and supporters of Tim Stultz, Kathleen Angelucci and Scott Sweeney rejoiced in the swearing-in ceremonies of the Cobb County Board of Education members representing Posts 2, 4 and 6 Thursday night at the district’s Central Office.
“I’m looking forward to working with them and sitting down with each of them individually,” retiring Superintendent Fred Sanderson said. “We’ll continue to work on academic achievement like we have for the last five years. Change is always exciting to me. It’s a chance to look at things differently and move forward.”
Invited state Senior Judge G. Conley Ingram presided over the ceremony. Ingram has been a judge since the early 1960s.
Angelucci was sworn in first, followed by Stultz and Sweeney. Stultz’s 3-year-old daughter, Mackenzie, stole some of her father’s limelight when she ran up to the table in which the board members were sitting and listening to Ingram. Stultz’s mother, Melba, said that Mackenzie told her father to “Remember to smile Daddy.”
Tim Stultz, 31, said joining the Cobb County School Board with two other new members reflected the volatility of today’s politics.
“Even at this level of government people aren’t happy,” said Stultz, a Georgia Tech grad. “We’ve got to be more available to the community. We can’t lock ourselves in this boardroom and expect everyone to follow suit. We welcome our community input. I think all of us are committed to that and that’s why all three of us are standing here right now.”
Sweeney said finding a new superintendent and balancing the district’s budget are his biggest concerns.
“I’m a back-to-basics kind of guy,” he said. “I want to reduce the workload on teachers and get back to the basics of education.”
Angelucci said she planned to bring a laminated card with her campaign platform to board meetings.
“It’s to remind me who I work for and represent and why I’m here,” she said. “I’m so proud I’m here. It’s going to be so cool. I’ve been an education activist for a very long time.”
Board member David Banks said the newest board members are naïve.
“They got a lot to learn, just like I did when I started,” said Banks, who was elected in 2008. “The perception is not really the reality. What you think you can do is not necessarily the reality. What you find is there are a lot of legal restrictions in place as a result of the infinite wisdom of our legislators.”
After conducting the ceremony, Judge Ingram said he enjoyed watching the joy permeating from Angelucci, Stultz and Sweeney throughout the evening.
“I see the future unrolled; the excitement and enthusiasm this new board brings,” Judge Ingram said. “I just sense the vigor in them. It inspires me.”