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Halladay seeks another term on Massena Central School Board

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MASSENA - An elementary physical education teacher says she would like to serve another term on the Massena Central School Board of Education.

“I think I have a better understanding of what it takes to be a board member,” Cristen R. Halladay said.

Ms. Halladay, 38, is an elementary physical education teacher in the Ogdensburg City School District. Her husband, Shane, is a math teacher at Massena Central High School, and she comes from a family of educators, including her mother, brother and sisters-in-law.

“We’re a family of teachers,” she said.

An Ogdensburg native, she attended St. Lawrence University and was a double major in physical education and psychology. She received her master’s degree in sports psychology at Ithaca College. She has two children in the Massena Central School District.

She was elected to a three-year term on the school board in May 2009, finishing third in votes behind Kevin F. Perretta and Leonard A. Matthews.

Now she wants to continue serving on the board with a five-year term. Elections will be held on May 15, and Ms. Halladay is on the ballot with incumbent Gregory C. Fregoe and newcomers Loren Fountaine, Patrick Serguson and Eva Waters. Two seats, currently held by Ms. Halladay and Mr. Fregoe, are up for grabs.

“I’m running again this year to continue to promote education. I want to make sure that education is our first priority,” Ms. Halladay said.

She said she also wanted to “encourage a positive atmosphere where everybody can perform at an optimal level.

“We have a wonderful staff in the Massena Central School District, and we have done some amazing things,” she said. “I want to continue to explore more educational opportunities and help our students flourish.”

As a board of education member, she serves on the district’s policy and personnel committees, and said she wants to see programs preserved in the district.

“I think we’ve maintained as many educational opportunities as possible with the difficult economic times. I want to make sure we not only maintain, but improve educational opportunities, to branch out to neighboring colleges,” Ms. Halladay said.

The district currently has relationships with local colleges such as SUNY Canton and Paul Smith’s that allow students to obtain college credit while still in high school.

Ms. Halladay said her role on the board of education is all about the students.

“I’m there for the students 110 percent, no ifs, ands or buts. I eat, sleep and breathe education,” she said. “It’s worth it when you se the smiles on the kids’ faces.”

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