2018-04-19 / Front Page

Strang resigns post on school committee


STRANG STRANG Dorothy Strang, the Democrat elected to the school committee in November 2016, has submitted her letter of resignation.

The Riptide Street resident will attend a final meeting May 3 before moving to Chicago three weeks later to be closer to her two daughters.

“The only thing I really regret is that I’m not fulfilling what I was elected to do,” she said at last Thursday’ s meeting. “And that’s not my style. But life has a way of falling into place in ways that we don’t anticipate. If we don’t take the opportunity, we might miss something important.”

B.J. Whitehouse, chairman of the school board, accepted the resignation with “extraordinary regret.”

“This is a loss for the town,” he said.

Strang, 76, is a widow who moved to town 10 years ago after retiring as a Michigan school teacher. She was active as a board member of the Jamestown Community Chorus, although she was most proud in her elected role.

“Serving on the school committee has been perhaps the greatest pleasure of all,” she said.

Strang is no stranger to Chicago, having lived there for 50 years; she earned her master’s degree at the city college.

“I’m going home,” she said.

Strang joked that her experience could benefit the failing Chicago public school system.

“Look out, Chicago,” Whitehouse quipped.

While Strang no longer will live alongside Narragansett Bay, she will retain her water views. She is moving into a vintage high rise overlooking Lake Michigan, the third largest lake in the nation.

“Education is not preparation for life,” Strang said, quoting John Dewey, “education is life. I’m confident the schools will continue to strive.”

Strang’s absence will leave a vacancy on the five-member board. According to Whitehouse, however, the town charter does not provide direction in these cases. Typically, he said, the next highest vote getter from the most recent election is appointed to the post. The last election, though, only featured three candidates for three seats. Also, the two write-in candidates were tied with two votes apiece. Whitehouse said he will speak to the town’s legal team for advice.

“Where we stand right now is, we don’t know,” he said. “The town charter gives us no guidance. I don’t think anybody saw this one coming.”

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