Council Moves to fill Vacant School Committee Seat (Lawrence)

Pat Mariano
Former Leahy School Principal Pat Mariano

Cooper resigned last month and moved out of the city saying that she refused to keep her children in the Lawrence Public Schools given the lack of leadership and curriculum just days before school was to begin. (see story) 

Four Lawrence Residents from the Mount Vernon District in Lawrence put their names in for consideration: Mr Maali, Joed Cameron Santos, Pat Mariano, and Martha Sybert.

 The Council met in a special session called a “council of the whole” where the full council meets but acts as a subcommittee, making recommendations to be reconsidered when the council meets next in public.

Tomorrow night the City Council will meet in full session and vote yes or no on the nomination of Mariano.

The Lawrence School Committee has no legal power or authority since the school department was taken over by the Massachusetts Department of Education. Commissioner Mitchel Chester appointed Receiver Jeff Riley to oversee the troubled school system under the authority of special legislation signed by Governor Deval Patrick. 

The council voted four times in a tie, before coming up with a majority for Mrs. Mariano, who has more than 25 years experience in public educator and has worked in the Lawrence school system for decades. The other nominee being considered was Cameron-Santos.

Councilor Sandy Almonte was not present at tonight’s meeting.