Three incumbents retain seats on Sayreville school board

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SAYREVILLE – Three incumbents have been re-elected to three-year terms on the Sayreville School District Board of Education.

In a race for three, three-year terms on the board, candidates John Walsh, Lucy Bloom and Dan Balka emerged as the top vote-getters in the Nov. 5 election. All three are current board members, whose new terms will run from Jan. 1, 2020, to Dec. 31, 2022.

As of Nov. 7, Walsh recorded 2,978 votes, Bloom received 2,914 votes and Balka received 2,712 votes, according to results posted online by the Middlesex County Clerk’s Office. The results are unofficial until they are certified by the county.

According to the clerk’s office, candidate James Bello collected 2,331 votes.

Balka is the chief financial officer for South Amboy and worked for Sayreville as the chief accountant for more than 20 years. A lifelong resident of the borough, he joined the board in 2010 and has been active in Parent Teacher Organizations (PTOs) throughout Sayreville, with his daughter attending school in the district. He said three areas of focus for him on the board will be continuing to improve college readiness of students, seeing more taxpayer money go directly toward classrooms, and staff retention.

Bloom is a retired high school art teacher who worked the last 19 years of her career at Sayreville War Memorial High School. She has resided in Sayreville for 47 years and joined the board in 2013. In addition to the district’s school board, she serves on the New Jersey School Boards Association Audit Committee and Board of Directors and is president of the Middlesex County School Boards Association. Bloom said three areas of focus for her on the board will be security, facility upgrades and air conditioning.

Walsh is an executive director for the New York Shipping Association-International Longshoreman Association. He holds a bachelor’s degree in education from Montclair State University and previously worked for 15 years as a public school teacher. A lifelong resident of Sayreville, he joined the board in 2013 and is also on the board of the Educational Services Commission of New Jersey, as well as serving as president of the Sayreville Junior Bombers Youth Football and Cheer organization and president of the Sayreville AAA youth lacrosse program. He said three areas of focus for him on the board will be safety, additional opportunities for students, and recruiting and retaining the best teachers.