The SCCC Trustees need a Conscience
Harry Dunleavy is right when he argues that the Sussex County Community Colleges Board of Trustees needs more people with backgrounds in science and math. There are some very good people on the Board, but their backgrounds are concentrated heavily in the legal and corporate communities -- with a few education bureaucrats thrown in. The personality of the Board is collegial and non-confrontational.
What is really needed is another Dan Perez -- a Conscience who is not afraid to stir things up, call out wrongdoing, and say what has to be said. We doubt that will happen any time soon, because the last time ended with the very public revelation that at least one trustee was self-dealing -- collecting money from a vendor to the SCCC while promoting contracts to that vendor. Several trustees were forced into early retirement over the scandal -- with some claiming that they did not understand that what occurred was ethically wrong. It was a real mess.
Maybe the time has come to elect the SCCC Board of Trustees, in the same way that the voters elect local Boards of Education. This would remove questions of insider-control over the SCCC Board of Trustees and would give qualified candidates for Trustee -- like Harry Dunleavy -- the opportunity to take their argument directly to the taxpayers who pay for the college. Of course, the election process should be non-partisan -- unconnected to any political party or group -- to give opportunity to the broadest spectrum of perspective.