Sara Swanson

Kim Blumenstein selected to fill vacant school board seat

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Kim Blumenstein was selected by the school board from a pool of five qualified candidates at a special school board meeting last Monday night. Photo courtesy of Kim Blumenstein.

Last Monday night during a School Board special meeting, five candidates spoke before the school board and audience of parents, and school staff, about their backgrounds, their understanding of the job of a school board member and how they would deal with conflict. Jami Booth, Dawn Schaffer, David Bartley, Kim Blumenstein and Casey Krone all were qualified in different ways for the open position created by school board member Dara Psarouthakis’ resignation. Psarouthakis, a board member since 2009, is moving out of the district and can no longer serve. After a long deliberation in closed session, the school board invited Kim Blumenstien to fill the role until the election in 2018.

Blumenstein is the parent of two students at Klager Elementary. She has over 22 years experience in management, human resources, strategic financial planning, customer service. As a child of a military father, she lived all over the country and even Europe, attending many schools, both public and private. She believes this will give her a unique viewpoint on education she will be able to bring to the board. While initially intended to only stay in Manchester temporarily, she and her husband fell in love with Manchester and decided to set down roots here, citing the school district, teachers and staff as the deciding factor in remaining in Manchester.

During the meeting, Blumenstein talked about her belief that one of the essential roles of a school board member is to listen. She stated, “Everyone wants to be heard. You have to stop and really listen when people are upset, and only then will you be able to work on a fair and equitable resolution.” Board president Chris Fegan informed her after the meeting that she would be sworn in at the next scheduled board meeting.

Blumenstein served on the transition team last spring and summer, working to ease the move of grades 5 – 8 from the Middle school to the High School and Klager. She also volunteers at Klager drop off every morning, directing traffic and helping students out of vehicles.

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