20-year-old Cornell gears up for School Committee run

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Nathan Cornell took his first shot at earning a seat onto the Warwick School Committee during the 2016 election, the same year he graduated from Toll Gate High School.

He ultimately fell short of his goal for an at-large seat, but managed to accrue a respectable 1,547 votes (13.3 percent of the total vote), and garnered praise on his campaign page for taking the time to campaign door-to-door and for his dedicated attendance to monthly school committee meetings, where he regularly speaks out during public comment to voice his opinion on school-related issues.

Now, at 20 years old, Cornell is gearing up for another shot at the committee. He announced his candidacy for the District 3 spot on the school committee at a March 12 fundraiser event at Dave’s Bar and Grill.

“I learned a lot last time, I learned what not to do. I take lessons from my mistakes and won't make those mistakes again. I know more now and have more information,” Cornell said on Monday. “I’ve gone to even more school committee meetings. I’ve been to every monthly school committee meeting for last three years so I have a good grasp on the issues and I definitely feel like I’m more ready this time.”

Cornell said that the school committee needs to be more transparent in its operations and needs to be more mindful of the public’s concerns, as well as the thoughts of the teachers and the students who must occupy the school buildings throughout the year.

“The school committee should speak with constituents and read their emails and make decisions that are best for constituents and the students,” he said.

Cornell believes that the school committee is guilty of wasteful spending and budgetary mismanagement, pointing to the hiring of a public relations firm that hasn’t been effective and spending $40,000 on a district website redesign that he felt was unnecessary and failed to improve the functionality of the site.

He also criticized the committee’s willingness to consolidate teaching positions to fill budgetary shortfalls, saying that they should be willing to look into cutting higher administration positions as well.

“The higher administration is too inflated,” he said, adding that “I think there needs to be better fiscal management.”

Cornell also criticized the administration for cutting programs he believed to be beneficial to students, including reading programs for elementary students and guidance counselor positions for the elementary schools. He said that he would make it a goal to improve special education programming within the schools.

As a graduate of the class of 2016, Cornell certainly has a more recent perspective on what life is like for a student in Warwick than those who may run against him, an element that Cornell believes – in addition to his keen attention paid to educational issues in the city – should make him a viable candidate come the fall.

“The students are not happy with what’s going on right now with the schools,” he said. “As a former student…I know what it's like to be a student and know how to reach out to them and make sure their opinions are valued.”

Cornell serves as the Co-Chair of the Warwick Community Outreach Educational Committee, Secretary of the Warwick Charter Review Commission and was formerly Chairman of the Warwick Students’ Advisory Committee. You can visit his campaign Facebook page at “Nathan Cornell for Warwick School Committee District 3 2018.”

The District 3 seat is currently held by committee chair Bethany Furtado. She has not announced whether she will seek reelection.

Comments

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Flo5582

Let's see how long it takes the not-so-humble Danny Hall, also a loser in the last bid for School Committee, to weigh in with his brilliant thoughts for the educational needs of this city

Thursday, March 22
Flo5582

Let's see how long it takes the not-so-humble Danny Hall, also a loser in the last bid for School Committee, to weigh in with his brilliant thoughts for the educational needs of this city

Thursday, March 22
patientman

If he could separate being an advocate for the students from being an advocate for the union he could bring an interesting perspective to the board. I think he believes advocating for the union and the students is the same thing. It most certainly is not.

Thursday, March 22
Flo5582

I certainly agree patientman.

I was of course being sarcastic but I agree with your point. He is most definitely a union man. He does not know how to advocate for students because he is completely out of touch with what the educational needs are in this city or on a broader level, in this state. How could he? His bid for School Committee was nothing more than an attempt to heal his bruised ego from a failed political run years earlier. He seems to always have something to say that he thinks is of value or merit without any facts or experience in public service what-so-ever, let alone educational experience, I will be shocked if he does not weigh in here.

Thursday, March 22
DannyHall

Stacia, Try reading some articles from 2016, I did not seek endorsement of any unions and actually the teachers union campaigned against me. Having a young child the last thing I want is for her to deal with what kids are dealing with now. Now the comment about the brilliant thoughts.... go back and read. Myself and Mr. Testa are the only candidates that answered every question that was asked of us. You do not have to worry about myself running for office, I wouldn't want to record you again slicing my campaign signs in half that were placed near your home.

Your comments are what I consider Fake news lol

Take Care

Monday, March 26
Flo5582

And what exactly is it that kids are dealing with now? From an educational standpoint, do you even know?? You have no basis for any comments about education. And although you may have answered every question asked of you, that does not mean that you responded with any relevant information or ideas. You don't seem to possess that I am however thankful that you will not be trying to soothe yourself for a third time with another political run, and that you will not be wasting votes that could be going to productive and educated candidates. Thank you for that!

Monday, March 26
Kammy

While I agree that a younger person who has more recent experience being a student would be a refreshing change, I am not sure how well they would hold up against such entrenched players. It would be nice to have someone that is leaning more towards the student and taxpayers than the unions.

Monday, March 26
DannyHall

Stacia, I'm starting to believe that you still think the world is flat. What is it that you do for work again? I'm wondering what qualifies you for State Rep.

Sunday, April 1
Flo5582

And once again, Mr. Hall is unable to answer a basic question regarding his qualifications or relevant experience. Most of us have young children at home, still that does not make them qualified to represent children and parents on such important matters. Eventually you must come to terms with that fact

Monday, April 2
Cat2222

@Flo5582 - It is almost as if you were looking for a fight?!? He didn't comment on the article until you posted something about him. Seriously, what qualified you to run for Mayor or State Rep? You lost as well. What leg are you standing on? Stay unhinged girl, it is quite the look for you.

Monday, April 2
DannyHall

Stacia, you haven't asked anything on here. I get a sense that you get so angry behind that keyboard but whats funny is you've never have actually have had the courage to say how you feel about me in person. Every time you've seen me in public you can't even make eye contact. From watching your debate on channel 10 I can see why......I'll do you a big favor, at the next council meeting I'll make sure I sit as close as I can to you. I mean you verbally assaulted a 15 year old child on social media and wouldn't return calls from the media....instead you posted a video? come on....

Oh before I go...You did ask what issues children are dealing with....How about adult bullies that attack them on social media? I look forward to seeing what you have to say in person and If that doesn't cure whats going on in your head here my personal cell phone number 401-374-4682.

my time here is done lol

See you at the council meeting

Tuesday, April 3
Flo5582

Mr.Hall (and the family member who you asked to comment before you)- you have now shown your comedic side.........

Tuesday, April 3
DannyHall

I'm still waiting for the phone to ring..... But thanks for agreeing to everything above. I look forward to releasing that video of you to the Warwick Beacon during your next campaign.... It's pretty funny

Tuesday, April 3
Flo5582

When you speak about funny, do you think of yourself as well?? You are little more than a joke. Your reputation in this city is laughable and quite embarrassing. You have garnered little respect as a person, much less as a candidate, obviously. But by all means, you go on thinking that you are valued in some way, and you continue to have those in your personal life stroke your ego to make yourself feel like you've contributed anything of value. That's a large undertaking.. good luck

Tuesday, April 3