EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

March 8, 2013

Methuen board bound for makeover


Mary Jean Fawcett, also in her first term, is “99 percent sure” she will run for reelection. “One of the things we’ve worked really hard on is coming to an agreement with the city side of government on charge backs,” she said. “There’s been a lot of positive progress made.”

At least two people are strongly considering a run at the School Committee and another is rumored to be thinking about another run.

Robert Vogler, a former teacher in Beverly who served on the School Committee for 35 years, is “about 90 percent certain” he will make another run for the committee, nearly two years after he lost his seat. Fawcett, Graziano, Quinn and Hajjar Kumm all swept onto the committee in the 2011 election, which left Vogler and parent Jeri-an Batal out. Chaisson and Grondine won reelection.

Vogler, a member of the Building Committee overseeing the high school project, said he wants to be part of the completion of the high school and the implementation of a new technology-based curriculum.

“You’ve got to have a purpose for running, and the final piece for Methuen for 30, 40 years will be the high school and the curriculum,” he said, adding that he participated in the K-8 school projects.

Bryan Sweet, chairman of the Methuen Democratic City Committee, said he is “strongly considering” a run as well. Sweet, who manages grants and contracts for Massachusetts General Hospital and also serves locally on the Building Committee, said he can contribute his financial experience to the city.

“The bottom line is I have an interest in public service and politics,” he said. “I want to serve the community and provide input for budget issues and economic issues. Methuen as a whole has built a strong academic foundation over last several years. The School Committee has done a great job, and I think the superintendent has done a great job.”

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