SOUTH RIVER Three incumbents and one former board member will compete for open seats on the South River Board of Education in the upcoming election.
Incumbents Edward Andre, Regis Wyluda and Anthony Razzano are accompanied by ex-board member John Budzin in the race for the three, three-year terms on the board.
Andre, 40, who is a lifelong resident, owns a masonry/construction company in the borough.
He has served on the Safety and Route Management, Buildings and Grounds and Finance committees during his three years on the board.
“While on the board my greatest accomplishments have been serving the local community and residents for the best interest of all our children,” Andre said. “I have chosen to run again because I have dedication, and love the good cause that I am doing to help our children for a better tomorrow in their education. … If I am re-elected I will do [everything] in my best power to continue to help improve our difficult tasks, such as financial needs, to give our children all that they need and to help improve better education.”
Budzin, 66, is a lifelong resident who graduated from South River High School. He previously served on the Board of Education for 21 years.
Budzin is retired after working for the South River Parks Department. He was a former president of the South River Booster Club and member of the 4th degree Knights of Columbus, South Amboy Elks Club and South River Little House.
“I enjoyed my time on the board and would like to serve again. I would like to see class size improve in lower grades,” Budzin said.
Razzano, 69, who is a lifelong resident, graduated from South River High School in 1966. He has served on the board for six years and is a retired teacher who taught for 35 years in the borough school district. Currently, he is the chairman of the board’s Instruction Committee and is also on the board’s Human Resources, Community Relations and Negotiations committees.
A former borough councilman, Razzano is also the former president of the South River Lions Club and currently a Zone Chairman for the Lions 16th District. He was the president of the trustees of the Conklin United Methodist Church.
“Our [board] members work in harmony with each other and any accomplishments are pretty much the work of the entire board,” he said. “I will say that in my role as a legislative committee member, I, along with many of my colleagues from around the state who are on that committee, were somewhat successful in getting the state to increase our aid by actually following the formula.”
Razzano said that he loves his hometown and wants to give back.
“I have experience as a [board] member and as a teacher and I am able to dedicate myself to the entire district with the kids, of course, coming first. I feel I have contributed much to our board discussions on various issues and I want to continue helping the district as best as I can,” Razzano said. “It is not just my town, but my schools. I went to South River schools from K through 12. I had a wonderful education and want to keep our educational system sound and viable.”
Razzano said he hopes to improve state funding to help ease the burden on taxpayers.
“It worked out somewhat for this year and I plan to keep working with our legislators to continue the increases in aid. Also, the state mandates must be funded by the state. The state ignores that law, therefore, the district has to pay for these mandates. I intend to continue to work with our legislators to hold the state’s feet to the fire on those,” he said. “I plan to continue to monitor our curriculum and keep our curricula guides top notch as they are now. I also plan to help keep the district up-to-date [with] its technology. With the proper funding, we can do things like make the Gifted & Talented program full time again, keep our excellent teachers and attract more excellent teachers. The list goes on and on.”
Wyluda, who is a lifelong borough resident, is currently the president of the Board of Education.
He has served on the board for more than 30 years and is a retiree who worked for Warren Energy where he was manager of the first Resource Recovery Facility in the state of New Jersey.
Wyluda is a former borough mayor and Planning Board member, and currently is an Advisory Board member for the borough’s Office on Aging. He is also a member of St. Mary’s Parish, a member of the Knights of Columbus, and a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineering organization.
“It is gratifying and enjoyable to see the progress and achievement of our future leaders. Also, the school system does an exceptional job in preparing the students for their future endeavors and I would like to be a part of it,” Wyluda said.
Going forward, he said he wants to, “increase awareness of curriculum and instructional reviews so that the students are equipped with the most recent advancements to meet the challenges of an ever-changing world.”
Contact Vashti Harris at firstname.lastname@example.org.