AMESBURY — A joint vote of the City Council and School Committee picked Elaine Bucher to fill a vacancy on the committee Tuesday.

Bucher, a Riverfront Drive resident and English teacher at Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School, said she will bring many years of experience with curriculum design to her new position.

“I basically wanted to do this because I feel it is so very important to advocate for our public schools,” Bucher said.

Bucher is expected to serve on the committee until January 2022. 

She is the mother of three daughters who attend district schools.

“Obviously, we have issues with unfunded mandates, which is what all the schools are dealing with,” Bucher said. “But I think we should be working on innovative ways to get around that.”

Bucher fills the seat of Tim Kisieleski, who was elected the District 5 city councilor last fall and resigned from the committee. A joint meeting of the council and committee convened at City Hall to appoint his successor Tuesday night.

Bucher received eight votes from committee members and councilors out of 14 present for the vote.

Bucher said she would like to see the school district communicate better with families and other members of the public.

“Communicating to parents and the kids about what we are doing is something that we need to be doing better,” Bucher said. “I think we also really need to be listening to our staff and making sure that we are doing what everyone who knows what is best for our children, who knows the educational theories and practices, says is best for our children.”

Substitute teacher Dale Massey, contractor David Haraske and global field service manager Peter Frey also applied to fill the vacant committee seat.

Councilors Matt Einson, Nick Wheeler, Pam Gilday, Anthony Rinaldi and Adrienne Lennon all cast their votes for Bucher while Kisieleski voted for Haraske and Scott Mandeville and Steve Stanganelli selected Massey

Committee members Mel Webster, Jana deBeer and Maryann Welch voted for Bucher, while Peter Hoyt voted for Haraske and Mayor Kassandra Gove and Kate Currie voted for Frey.

District 6 Councilor Michael Hogg was not present.

Staff writer Jim Sullivan covers Amesbury and Salisbury for The Daily News. He can be reached via email at jsullivan@newburyportnews.com or by phone at 978-961-3145. Follow him on Twitter @ndnsully.

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