Cambridge Civic Journal Forum

August 3, 2011

Attention Candidates!

Filed under: 2011 Election,City Council,School Committee — Tags: , , — Robert Winters @ 8:44 am

Attention Candidates! – Now that the roster of candidates for this November’s municipal election is all set (Candidate Pages), the next step is to gather photos and information from all the candidates. A more formal request will go out soon, but submissions are welcome now. This includes:

a) Photos for the gallery and your individual candidate page.

b) Contact information, websites, Twitter and Facebook pages, where to send donations, etc.

c) Background information so that voters may be introduced to you or get to know you better.

d) Suggestions for topics on which all candidates will be asked to submit statements.

Look over the existing pages for 2011 and previous years (see links at bottom of the Candidate Pages) and send whatever you wish to or by mail to 366 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139. All of the information provided is very helpful to voters, journalists, and organizers of candidate forums and similar events. Don’t delay! – Robert Winters

Note: Any candidate who may be having second thoughts has until Wed, Aug 17, 5:00pm to submit a withdrawal of nomination to be removed from the ballot. Otherwise…. it’s Campaign Season!

All residents are welcome to submit suggestions for topics on which all candidates will be asked to submit statements.
You may submit them via e-mail or enter them here as comments.


  1. Suggestions for topics for School Committee candidates:
    1. Thoughts on the Innovation Agenda
    2. Controlled Choice
    3. Budget

    Suggestions for topics for City Council candidates:
    1. Innovation Agenda
    2. Development/density
    3. Grand Junction rail

    (These were suggested by two of the candidates.)

    Comment by Robert Winters — August 4, 2011 @ 8:34 pm

  2. Here are some suggestions for City Council candidates sent by a long-time respected civic participant:

    1) Name three important things you think the City Council should accomplish in the next two years.

    2) Name the three most important things the Council accomplished during the past two years.

    [This would tell a lot about what they think is important, separating some wheat from the chaff, and what they think the Council’s role actually should be.]

    For incumbents:
    3) Name the three most important things that you accomplished in the past two years.

    Comment by Robert Winters — August 8, 2011 @ 2:36 pm

  3. These are the City Council topics from 2009 (candidates did not have to comment on all of them):

    1) Background: [biographical, etc.]
    2) Top Priorities: [List about three and elaborate below]
    3) Quality of Life and Public Safety (rodents, noise abatement, etc.):
    4) Traffic, Parking, and Transportation:
    5) Municipal Finance (Budget, Assessments, Property Taxes, etc.):
    6) Government and Elections (Plan E Charter, City Manager, staff for councillors, etc.):
    7) Land Use, Planning, Zoning, Density:
    8) Economic Development and Commerce:
    9) Human Services Programs (including youth programs and senior programs):
    10) Open Space, Parks, and Recreation:
    11) Energy, the Environment, and Public Health:
    12) Housing:
    13) Arts and Public Celebrations:
    14) University Relations:
    15) Civic Participation:
    16) Cambridge Public Schools:

    Comment by Robert Winters — August 23, 2011 @ 9:58 am

  4. These are the School Committee topics from 2009 (candidates did not have to comment on all of them):

    1) Background (biographical, etc.)
    2) Top Priorities (List about three – then elaborate below)
    3) School Department Administration and Superintendent
    4) School Department Budget and Capital Needs (including CRLS renovations, and the disposition of surplus buildings)
    5) Controlled Choice, Student Assignment Policies, and the “Achievement Gap”
    6) Enrichment Programs (honors classes, after-school opportunities, etc.)
    7) Enrollment and the Marketing of Public Schools vs. Charter Schools and Private Schools
    8) Elementary Schools and Curriculum (positives and negatives, middle school proposal, other changes you would support)
    9) High School Programs and Curriculum (positives and negatives, and changes you would support)
    10) MCAS and Measuring Student Achievement (pros, cons, alternatives)
    11) Teacher Evaluations and Performance Measures
    12) School Safety and Student Behavior
    13) Parent Involvement and School Councils
    14) Other (include additional topics, if you wish)

    Note: These clearly need to be modified to address such topics as the “Innovation Agenda” and other topics of the day.

    Comment by Robert Winters — August 23, 2011 @ 10:03 am

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