After three-and-a-half years, Anne Lougee has decided to end her service on the Belmont School Committee by not seeking a second term at Town Election in April 2015.
Lougee’s announcement will create a second open seat on the Committee in the coming election. Also on the ballot will be incumbent Lisa Fiore, who is seeking her first full three-year term after serving the unexpired time of Pascha Griffiths, who resigned in 2013.
Lougee decided not to pursue re-election after the evaluation and selection process in November to replace School Committee member Kevin Cunningham, who resigned in September.
“It’s hard to walk away from a group of wonderful colleagues but I was encouraged by the number of well-qualified candidates who came before the committee and selectmen last month for the position,” Lougee told the Belmontonian.
Thomas Caputo was selected from eight residents to replace Cunningham. His term ends at Town Election. Caputo can file to run for the remaining two years of Cunningham’s term, challenge Fiore for her seat or decide not to run.
At his appointment, Caputo said he would seek election to the board.
Fiore, a Lesley University faculty dean with children in district schools, was elected in 2014 to fill the one-year remaining on Griffiths’ term. She told the Belmontonian in September she would likely run for re-election in 2015.
Nomination papers are currently available at the Belmont Town Clerk’s office; the deadline for their return is 5 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015.
Lougee, whose daughter is a 2011 Belmont High School graduate, was appointed to the committee in October 2011 to fill the remainder of the term held by Karen Parmett, who resigned. She won a full stint in the 2012 Town Election.
Lougee said the selection of Belmont Schools Superintendent John Phelan and promoted social/emotional learning throughout the district was two of her accomplishments serving on the committee.
In addition, Lougee emphasized from the time she was on PTOs that parents and officials must not take a myopic view of the town’s schools.
“You have to look at the whole system. It’s K through 12; you can’t separate it by school building or class,” said Lougee, a native midwesterner who came to Belmont in the 1980s and lives on Warwick Road with her husband, Roger Colton.
“You must know how it all works together for your child because they will be a graduate one day,” said Lougee.
In addition to the collegiality of the committee members, Lougee said she’ll also miss witnessing the growth of students in the classroom, in athletics and the arts.
“I love watching the kids test themselves and build their confidence,” she said.