An Upper Moreland Township School Board member will resign after telling other board members at the board’s Dec. 6 reorganization meeting that they should not vote for a “cis” White male for board president.
“I believe that Mr. D’Elia would make an excellent president,” Board Treasurer Jennifer Solot said. “However, I feel that electing the only cis white male on this board president of this district sends the wrong message to our community: a message that is contrary to what we as a board have been trying to accomplish.”
The board then voted 8-1 for April Stainback.
Stainback and Superintendent Susan Elliott Ed.D. issued a joint statement Monday announcing that Solot will resign in January.
“We would like to follow up on a situation that has had a significant impact on the Upper Moreland Township School District and our entire community over the past several days,” Stainback and Elliott wrote.
“Solot made comments at the board’s reorganization meeting that many in our community took offense to. The comments were in relation to the election of a president for the Board of School Directors.
As a result of this incident, Ms. Solot has decided to resign from the board effective January 2, 2023. She wishes to apologize for her poorly chosen words and does not want to be a distraction from the great things happening in our schools on a daily basis. The district thanks Ms. Solot for her five years of service to the Upper Moreland community as a board member.
“The comments made by Ms. Solot at the board reorganization meeting were solely hers and were not intended to represent the opinion of the entire UMSD Board of Directors or the district as a whole.
“Indeed, Board Director Greg D’Elia, who was the subject of her comments, says that he ‘supports diversity, but these comments did not further diversity and reflected poorly on our community.’”
The “UMSD is committed to providing students, staff, and the community a school environment in which all feel safe, valued, and heard. This is a commitment we take very seriously.”
Asked to comment, Mackenzie Arcuri, a spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania School Boards Association, said, “Because PSBA is not a regulatory body or state agency and does not exercise oversight of local school board matters, we are not in a position to comment on this matter.”