Washington Township Board of Education member Candace Zachowski submitted her letter of resignation to board president Julie Kozempel at the board’s April 28 regular meeting, ending seven years of service to the community. A typical BOE send-off, including a plaque presentation, was modified as the Board continues to meet remotely during the state-sanctioned COVID-19 quarantine.
A master and certified board member, Zachowski was an integral contributor on numerous board committees, including instructional affairs, student activities, finance, negotiations and policy review. She also served as a liaison to the superintendent’s cabinet and on multiple sub-committees including redistricting, special education, private-public partnerships, town council, strategic planning and the equity coalition.
“It is with mixed emotions that I announce that I am stepping down from the board of education,” Zachowski said. “My husband and I have sold our home of 33-plus years and will be retiring in another state on May 15. I would like to thank the Washington Township community for the opportunity of working so closely with our staff, parents, students and previous and present board members. The district has made great progress – from updating our website to redistricting to implementing full-day kindergarten, the smart schedule, curriculum initiatives and the equity coalition. The NJSBA has afforded me the opportunity to develop, through workshops and training, into a knowledgeable board member who was better suited to serve our board with integrity. I will miss each and every one of you as I leave. I wish nothing but the best for township’s future.”
“I very much admire Candace and the professionalism that she always has shown with her background as a teacher and in the arts,” board president Julie Kozempel said of Zachowski, a retired Deptford teacher. “She will be missed. It will be very difficult to fill her shoes.”
“I want to personally thank Candace for her service,” Superintendent of Schools Joe Bollendorf said. “I learned so much from her. As lifelong educator and someone who is very connected in many ways, we all benefited from Candace’s motherly instinct. I always appreciated her sentiments, her efforts to help me grow in my position. People on the outside looking in have no idea of the amount of time and sacrifice that board members give to this community. The amount of time that Candace has served on committees and the work that she has done, in growing her own expertise by working with the School Boards Association and as a retired member of the NJEA, is extraordinary. She epitomizes what true educators are all about, and I know that she will continue to positively impact education in whatever community she is in.”
The board of education vacancy will be advertised, and the board will appoint a candidate from the applicants to complete the remainder of the 2020 year. There then will be an election to determine a candidate who will complete Zachowski’s term, which officially expires on Dec.31, 2021.