Dear Editor and Wilmington Residents,
It is with enthusiasm that I write to announce my candidacy for the Wilmington School Committee. I have a deep commitment to supporting the mental health needs of children and youth and believe strongly that students are not able to access education if their social and emotional needs are not being considered. As a licensed mental health counselor and school consultant I have devoted my 17-year career to the belief that successfully raising and educating children requires that we take a “whole child” approach. This means that we must support the child’s physical health, social connections, and emotional well-being in order to be successful. In addition to understanding education from the student-perspective, I also pride myself on my ability to establish meaningful and effective working relationships with teachers, administrators and school counselors. Through my school consultation work (across districts on the North Shore) I have helped to evaluate and develop special education and general education behavioral health programs, supervised the clinical work of school-based counselors and social workers, and provided district-wide professional development trainings on topics such as: understanding anxiety disorders in children/teens, social skills training, emotion regulation, and creating trauma sensitive classrooms. I believe that educators need and deserve adequate and ongoing training and support in the area of social and emotional development in order to meet the demands that they face these days; and I believe that administrators need better access to the research on mental health issues in order to make sound decisions when it comes to policy and budgeting. I am confident that I will bring this perspective to the school committee when I am elected in April.
I have lived in Wilmington for 18 years with my husband Nate and two daughters (Natalie 5th and Kylie 8th grade) who are enrolled in the public school system. Nate has been a volunteer for many years as a coach on several different sports teams. I have volunteered on the WMS principal search committee and the SEL Reopening Focus Group this past summer/fall (in addition to volunteering for classroom support when our girls were younger and supporting the important work that the PAC does each year). We are grateful for our educational experiences in Wilmington and for amazing teachers who have been influential in our girls’ lives. While my professional experiences will serve to guide my insights and opinions on the school committee, it is my role as a mom that motivates me the most to do this important work. I want to be a voice and an advocate for them, and for their friends who I care so much about. I would love to be a voice for you and your children as well. There has never been a greater need for the perspective that I will bring to the seat. Please consider me for one of your school committee votes on April 24, 2021. I would appreciate your vote and would be honored to serve on the Wilmington School Committee.
To learn more about me please visit: https://www.facebook.com/MelissaPlowmanforWilmingtonSchoolCommittee/
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