Matawan and Aberdeen voters will be asked to select their Board of Education representatives during the election next month.
New Jersey School Board Elections are normally held in April, however Senate Bill 3184, which was signed into law by Gov. Chris Christie in January, allowed school boards to combine their elections with the general election in November.
In February, the district voted to move the election, along with the majority of New Jersey school districts.
There is (1) three-year term open for a Matawan resident, while there are (2) three-year terms and (1) one-year unexpired term open for Aberdeen residents.
Elizabeth Hayward is on the ballot seeking reelection to the board for a three-year term.
Elizabeth Hayward is an Aberdeen resident with two sons at Matawan Aberdeen Middle School. She was elected to the board of education in April 2009 and serves as the board's vice president. Hayward also represents Aberdeen on the Bayshore Outfall Committee. Prior to becoming a board member, she served as a chairperson for Parents of Special People and a board liaison for the Strathmore Elementary School PTO (Parent Teacher Organization). She works as an attorney in New Jersey.
"Having already served now for over three years, I believe that the district is going in the right direction and I would like to continue to be a part of that. I'm the mother of two school-aged children, so I have a vested interest in the success of this district," she said.
Hayward noted that she is happy with the direction that the district is heading in, and believes the success is due in part to everyone coming together to work toward the same goals.
"I've really seen a change in our district. I belive right now we have a board and an administration that is vested in our students' success and promoting student achievement," she said.
As the chairperson of the negotiations committee, Hayward is particularly proud of being able to help the district reach a contract settlement with the Matawan Regional Teachers' Association (MRTA).
"Really it was a two year effort, working on resolving the contract with the teachers," she said. "The cost savings and contract language will have a long lasting and positive effect on the climate and learning environment of the school district. The new contract includes a full period administrative duty for all teaching staff in each of the district's schools."
If reelected, Hayward believes it is important to continue being fiscally responsible as well as continue supporting academic programs that strengthen student performance.
"We should continue to pursue cost savings measures such as shared services agreements and reduction in fixed costs such as insurance," she said. "A year from now I would like to see the district continue our upward trend. Specifically, to achieve our goals of student achievement, improvement in both our language arts literacy and math scores, providing a safe and secure learning environment for our students and responsible budgets for our taxpayers."