web analytics

Archive | Post Scripts

Don’t let “We are teachers” letter fall on deaf ears

Don’t let “We are teachers” letter fall on deaf ears

The letter that appeared in the Post last week signed by 97 current and recently departed staff members gave me chills. The educators listed span across the district in all grade levels, all subjects and all buildings. Everyone in this community can find at least one educator on that list whose opinion they value. Uniting and coming forward to express their support of the two candidates they feel would best represent our staff and students was a real leap of faith. After two-plus years of virtual silence while the community has been begging for answers, the people we entrust our children with day-in and day-out have spoken. It was well written, entirely positive, and accurately displayed (with profound emotion) the love they have for our community, our schools and our children. This is a larger display of unity than any of us have seen in recent years, and it’s our responsibility to listen. Please read between the lines. They are loudly and clearly giving us what we’ve been asking for and we cannot let it fall on deaf ears. Vote Sabinas and Bowser on November 8, and unite this community in moving forward.

Tami Elliston, Algoma Township

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Candidates will not hide behind “policy”


The past couple of years I have become actively involved in our board meetings and learning about the choices we are making at the leadership level within our district. As a parent, I am concerned about my children’s education. I have watched many valuable programs that were once in existence disappear. They were great programs that worked to support our children like Habits of Mind, Red Hawk Kids Club, Cognitive Coaches and advanced math to name a few. We had become the best-kept secret in Kent County for education; Cedar Springs was leading the way. It makes me sad to see the shift. Changes take place every day; I am not afraid of change if done with good intent, respect, leadership and purpose.

As we prepare for the November 8 election, I want a positive change for our students, staff and community and that is why I am supporting Ted Sabinas and Mistie Bowser. They have the kid’s best interest at heart and are willing to lead and collaborate to make the best decisions for our district and our children. They both are collaborative, curious and discerning to ensure we make the best decisions for our district. They know what a good leader is and are committed to demonstrating those qualities as Board of Education members. They will be willing to listen at the board meetings and answer questions, they will be involved in the schools and they will not hide behind “policy.” I am looking forward to seeing positive leadership at the top again. I know that is what Ted and Mistie will bring to the school board and our community! Please vote yes to Sabinas and Bowser on November 8th.

Heidi Greenland, Nelson Township

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Support candidates who support direction of district


I am a lifelong resident of Cedar Springs who currently has two students attending Cedar Springs Public Schools. If you haven’t had a chance to read last week’s Post editorials, please do. Several community members felt the need to take the time to write editorials to share their stories about who they felt would best serve on the school board. Those letters speak loudly.

I am personally very thankful for the progress our district has made under Dr. Vanduyn’s direction; she has brought professionalism and fiscal accountability to our district. The programs and services she has implemented for our students have been many: a new health and dental clinic; a new teacher chosen K-12 math curriculum; Responsive Classrooms; Okay2Say program; and a school resource officer, just to name a few. She’s also helping our teachers. Just recently medical costs were lowered for the district with the same coverage for the teachers; professional development is now being appropriately tracked through the HR department, which helps the teachers with certifications; and budgeting has been moved to the buildings, which gives the teachers more of a voice in how funds are being used. She’s doing a great job for the sake of our students and our teachers. I urge you to vote for the two candidates who have voiced support for the current direction the district is headed—Marckini and Reed.

Kerri Hanes, Cedar Springs

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Help and support teachers


To Citizens of Cedar Springs,

School leadership is the process of enlisting and guiding the talents, energies of teachers, students and parents toward achieving common educational goals. The number one job of the superintendent is to lead learning. How have the CS Board and Dr. VanDuyn demonstrated and supported clear learning goals? To accomplish these tasks, it is imperative to work with teachers and students. School performance benefits from a collaborative approach to leadership, which includes sharing findings, failures, and concerns. Relationship building with our educators is essential to effective educational leadership, and it is vital to acknowledge, and support the roles and contributions of all. Effective leadership will create an educational environment in which opportunities for positive change are present and supported throughout the organization. What collaboration has occurred? How have the BOE and superintendent connected with our teachers—the most vital group impacting student learning? Culture is the underground stream of norms, values, beliefs, traditions, and rituals that have built up over time as people work together, solve problems, and confront challenges. This set of informal expectations and values shapes how people think, feel, and act in schools. This highly enduring web of influence binds the school together and makes it special. It is up to school leaders—superintendents, school BOE, together with staff to help identify, shape, and maintain a strong positive student-focused school culture. Without a supportive culture, reforms will wither, and student learning will suffer. Many folks have shared that our student and staff cultures are struggling. This is the clear job of the Superintendent and the BOE. They set the tone, drive and create positive culture. What clear perimeters have been determined for supporting a change in CSPS culture? Based on the number of people—57 in the last year and the 97 signatures of staff who are supporting a clear change for Cedar Springs—it would seem obvious to all that our culture is broken. In honor of those that have left and the teachers that are indirectly asking for help and support, vote yes for Ted and Mistie on November 8th.

Jennifer Harper, Concerned Mom, 

Algoma Township

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Don’t get ingrained with “the way we always do it”


This upcoming election is an important one for the future of CSPS. I saw before someone made the comment that “Cedar Springs was the best kept secret” my first thought was really? Why? Maybe because our schools are falling apart? The driveways are awful? I honestly wasn’t exactly sure what was meant. I believe change isn’t always easy, and any community tends to get ingrained with the “way we always do it.”

I have been a community member and small business owner in Cedar for a number of years. I have grandkids in school, and I have volunteered on many occasions. Our community is very divided. I believe it’s time to let the past be the past and move forward. We aren’t all going to agree on the issues nor should we, but we need to find the positive, mutual ground and respect each other. We need to assess where we are, and rally behind our current administration and board.

I feel I have done my homework about the issues and candidates. Honesty and integrity are two important things anyone should embrace. These will make us as a community stronger.

I know there are new programs being implemented that have directly affected our kids positively. One I feel is extremely important and is saving lives! It’s good when we can talk about tough issues like suicide; be proactive and implement programs that have already saved lives because of intervention in just a couple months. No matter how you feel about the current administration or the board, it’s time to unite behind them and move forward.

I feel we have to ask the question—are we going to continue to build this great school district? Then we need to re-elect Joseph Marckini and elect Heidi Reed. They both act with integrity, have a tireless dedication and are champions for all our kids!

With a community that is united, working together for the kids, CSPS will shine and truly have a reason to be called “The best kept secret.” Let’s vote for our kids and vote Marckini and Reed!


Sally Petty 

Nelson Township 

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

School Board election important for district


For a little over a year now I have been attending school board meetings, and have attended all but a few (when we were out of state and when my daughter was sick and needed me home). I have volunteered in the District Strategic Planning process and I volunteer as a member of the District School Improvement Team. I volunteered and was able to attend Responsive Classroom training with some of the district support staff last year. And I have volunteered in classrooms in the district 1-3 times per week for the past nine years. It has not been easy to do these things; it certainly takes commitment. Life is busy for everyone, but these things are something that my husband and I feel strongly about and know how important they are for our children’s educations. It has taken sacrifice on our part, lots of planning, scheduling, and asking grandparents for help with the kiddos. But it is all worth it because we have become involved, educated, and aware community members. We know the things happening in our district and the progress being made because we have witnessed it firsthand. We attend meetings, we ask questions, we schedule meetings with school staff; we are involved stakeholders of CSPS.

The November 8th school board election is very important for our school district, our students, our staff, the parents, and the community as a whole. I have taken the time, done the research, made my decision. I know my votes will go to Joe Marckini and Heidi Reed because I know without a doubt in my mind they will serve on the school board with the priority of putting kids first.

As a mom and an involved, educated community member I ask: Please vote Marckini and Reed on November 8.

Jennifer Skelonc, Nelson Township

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Board candidates are financially focused on kids


As someone who manages a $400 million budget, I can appreciate the complexity of managing multi-million dollar budgets. With a tight budget comes difficult decisions, especially when it affects the education of students. The school’s budget can be very complicated and challenging. One responsibility of the Cedar Springs Board of Education is to review the budget and ensure it is in order, while following the districts’ goals.

A BOE member also needs to be aware of the State’s educational budget and how it affects the districts students. That requires attending legislative meetings and advocating for public education with the local, state and federal government. It requires asking difficult questions and being persistent to get results and in the end, doing the right thing for the greater good.

For this CSPS Board of Education election, voters should take both of these into account when selecting which candidates they are voting for. I strongly believe Heidi Reed and Joseph Marckini both exemplify the ability to do both without a personal agenda. Heidi Reed has years of experience overseeing budgets and business acumen on the government level. Joe Marckini has years of experience advocating for the children of CSPS on multiple levels of the government. Both are financially focused for the kids of this district and want ensure the school’s money is used to benefit all learning styles of CSPS.

As a CS Red Hawk, I encourage you to please vote on November 8, for Heidi Reed and Joe Marckini. They both put kids first.

Michele Tracy, Palmyra, Pennsylvania

Formerly of Cedar Springs

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Candidate possesses wisdom and leadership


I am writing this letter in support of someone who has impacted my life immensely, and whom I hope can be given the chance to do the same for the community that I grew up in.

Ted Sabinas is full of endless positive attributes, but wisdom, and the leadership that is derived from that wisdom are two prominent ones. I had the honor of being an athlete under his coaching, which was both a privilege and a life-altering experience. I attribute many of my foundational skills, both on and off the track, to his guidance, advice, and care.

Specifically, I’ll always remember one particular time during my sophomore year of High School. We were sitting on the tailgate of his truck while the team finished their cool-down, and I had an injury that had kept me out of running for months. He told me that it’s during the hardest times that the strongest athletes and people are made, and I believed him. I believed him because he never gave me a reason to not put 100 percent of my trust in him.

He was the kind of coach who showed up and genuinely cared for the people he was around, and I know he is the same way in any role he possesses.

Coach Sabinas re-measured our cross country course way too many times because he is the most honest person you’ll find.

He encourages the youth because it’s in his nature to teach, to teach others something more than just measurable skills.

He pours out a sense of love and pride for two things: his family and his community.

It would be an honor for Cedar Springs to have someone like this lead us in molding a community full of strength, wisdom, and love for one another.

The future of our wonderful town can be, in part, in the hands of someone who will handle it with the greatest care. What a wonderful chance that is for us.

Kenzie Weiler, Nelson Township

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Candidates will help bridge communication gap


I have known Ted Sabinas for over 35 years. I have witnessed him give the majority of his life to serving the students and families of our community. I find him to be an honorable man possessing integrity. Even though retired, he again feels called to serve.

I have come to know Mistie Bowser over the past several months and witnessed her commitment and honesty. While a widowed mother of four, I appreciate her willingness to serve.

They both assured me they would respectfully ask the difficult questions, do their own research, and talk with our trained/experienced educational team for real answers. I believe they will serve as a trusting and transparent voice for all tax payers, educators, and most importantly our students.

Based on my direct conversations with Ted and Mistie (no rumors or hearsay), I am convinced they are the best choices for school board representatives. I believe Ted and Mistie’s motivation is based only on their commitment to making CSPS a place where children will become all they are meant to be, and will help bridge the current communication gap between staff and administration in a respectful way that will ease the current division and concerns of staff and help the administration find ways to connect and rebuild unity for the good of our kids.

For this important decision, I would ask that you gather accurate facts directly from Ted and Mistie before you cast your vote.

Tim Wolfe, Nelson Township

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Another vote for Reed and Marckini

NOTICE: The Cedar Springs Post welcomes letters of up to 350 words. The subject should be relevant to local readers, and the editor reserves the right to reject letters or edit for clarity, length, good taste, accuracy, and liability concerns. All submissions MUST be accompanied by full name, mailing address and daytime phone number. We use this information to verify the letter’s authenticity. We do not print anonymous letters, or acknowledge letters we do not use. Writers are limited to one letter per month. Email to news@cedarspringspost.com, or send to PostScripts, Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.

* We only print positive letters about candidates one week prior to the election.




Another vote for Reed and Marckini

Dear Community Members of Cedar Springs,

I am voting for Heidi Reed and Joe Marckini because I believe in healthy change and district advancement. We all want Cedar Springs Public Schools to grow and for our students to succeed. Change is essential for growth.

I am the daughter of David and Heather Wolfe. Both of my parents were born and raised in Cedar Springs and graduated from Cedar Springs Public Schools. I was born and raised in Cedar Springs and also graduated from Cedar Springs Public Schools. I love our district, and am proud to be a lifetime Red Hawk. I want to see our district succeed, and the election of our board members is a key component to that success.

The Michigan Association of School Boards outlines Indicators of Effective Board Members. Heidi Reed and Joe Marckini possess all of the traits valued by the association. They both have decades of experience collaborating with people of all different backgrounds and viewpoints. Our district thirsts for additional board members who are willing and able to work well with others.

Heidi Reed is focused on staff morale and student achievement. She is an advocate for curriculum that supports children of all learning styles and backgrounds. She is an active community member and can be found at nearly all fundraisers and events within our community. Heidi has seen the issues our community faces first hand, and will use her voice to ask questions consistent with the present issues.  She’s not afraid to get her hands dirty, and will be a warrior for our school board.

I am excited about the direction our district is heading. I choose to look forward, and think positively about our district’s future. I choose to believe in, and support our leadership. Cedar Springs Public Schools’ students deserve the best.

Please join me in voting to make kids our district’s top priority by voting Heidi Reed and Joe Marckini.

Bayley Wolfe, Nelson Township

Posted in Post ScriptsComments (0)

Advertising Rates Brochure
Ensley Team Five Star Realty
Cedar Car Co
Kent Theatre

Get the Cedar Springs Post in your mailbox for only $35.00 a year!