Noonan running for school board as independent

Noonan running for school board as independent

PAWTUCKET - Raymond Noonan has filed papers to run for a seat on the Pawtucket School Committee as an independent candidate. The former school board member said in a news release that he's running with the "best interests of our schoolchildren" at heart and because no one "should be beholden to special interests or party alignment."

"I grew up in Pawtucket. Like my parents, my sisters and brother, I attended the public schools of Pawtucket," said Noonan. "In 2008, I gave an interview to a newspaper in which I stated that I was running for a (seat) because I wanted to 'give something back,' that I attended Pawtucket Public Schools when they were great and that I believed they could once again be great. "They are not yet great," said Noonan. "Thus, I now seek office again."

Noonan served on the School Committee for two consecutive terms beginning in January of 2009.

"I am very proud of my actions during that tenure," he said. "I urge you to review the record of my service during that period of time and ask questions not only of me, but of others regarding my service."

In September of 2012, Noonan lost his bid for a third straight term. "Some may call my loss the product of politics; that comment is fair and quite possibly accurate," he said. "I will take the high road, however, and attribute my failure of not being returned to office (to) my failure to communicate my vision of what our city's school system should be. That failure stops now."

Pawtucket should have the "best urban school district" in the U.S., said Noonan. That vision was taught to him by a teacher, former Pawtucket Supt. Deborah Cylke.

"It's a simple goal which involves a simple commitment: We can all do better," he said.

As a trial attorney, Noonan says he knows that a simple message is never easy to communicate. As a candidate, it is his duty to explain himself and convince voters that he is the best candidate. "In that regard, I pledge to meet every single parent of every single student attending every single Pawtucket school and try to persuade them that though the progress Pawtucket schools have made is worthy of applause, it is still not worthy of acceptance," he said. "We still must do better."

Noonan said he will ask for "no one's vote" this November, but instead that voters "join me in a commitment" to do better.

Though he doesn't have all the answers, Noonan promised to answer every question posed to him with absolute honesty.