Watch the 2023 Haddonfield BOE Candidate Forum

The HCA works to provide a non-biased resource to assist residents in making an informed decision when voting. We hope you enjoy the 2023 BOE Candidate Forum.

You can jump directly to the questions which concern you by clicking on the timestamps below the video.

This year we have 4 candidates for 3 seats. Steve Derkoski, Jess Drass, Michael Nuckols and Nousheen Yousuf-Sadiq are listed on the ballot with residents able to vote for three candidates of their own choice to fill the seats.

Please consider getting involved with the HCA and make a small donation. We appreciate your support.

Jump to a specific question by clicking on a timestamp below.

0:00 – HCA Introduction

0:50 – League of Women Voter’s introduction and explanation of the rules.

5:40 – Candidates Opening Statements

13:52 – If elected what input would you contribute to the Board of Education and what specifically would you be able to change as suggested in your campaign?

20:58 – What do you see as the greatest challenge for our children relative to education in the coming years?

26:52 – The current Haddonfield Board of Education policy number 5756 titled “Transgender Students” states that the “school district shall except students of asserted gender identity, parental consent is not required.” In addition the policy states “there is no obligation regardless of student age to alert parents either before or after accepting the gender identity.” The question as a Board member is, do you support this policy as it is because it affirms the students stated gender identity or are you concerned that social transition at school without parental knowledge is an unsupervised psychological intervention?

34:43 – Do you believe that librarians and teachers can effectively judge appropriate books for the classroom and library or are you in favor of the system where books are vetted and potentially removed, as has been happening in many districts around the country?

39:53 – Do you believe that the opt-out mechanism in it’s present form allows parents sufficient freedom to remove their children from aspects of the curriculum to which they object or does it require further modification?

44:06 – What are your thoughts on the current state of the districts’ buildings and grounds? Where can current resources be better allocated and are you in favor of a bond referendum to address infrastructure and building improvements?

49:31 – What are your thoughts on the current state of our indoor and outdoor athletic fields? If elected would you push for increasing or reducing funds for athletic fields and courts in the High School and Middle School?

54:26 – How are you qualified to assess land development issues for the Board and what strategies might you have for the District? What is your position on the purchase of the Kings Way property?

1:01:24 – Do you feel the current use of school resource officers (SRO’s) is working? What is your view in placing SRO’s in our Middle and Elementary schools?

1:06:12 – Haddonfield students are significantly underfunded by the state, what can you do to increase the state funding and reduce the property tax burden on residents?

1:11:25 – In a recent survey that went out about an upcoming referendum there were a lot of questions regarding inclusion, but not one mentioned inclusion of those with disabilities. Are you aware that this is an issue and how can the BOE improve inclusion as it pertains to individuals with disabilities?

1:18:10 – When the administration is introducing a major change in policy procedure or methodology into the schools, what are steps you would take to gain buy-in or increase the level of receptivity of residents?

1:23:02 – Candidates Closing Statements

1:29:37 – League of Women Voter’s Closing Statement

1:31:53 – HCA Closing Statement

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