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BOE member Mendiola-Long resigns

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BOARD of Education member Phillip Mendiola-Long of Tinian resigned on Tuesday.

He tendered his resignation during an executive or closed door session of the virtual special board meeting that started at 9 a.m.

Education Board Chairwoman Janice A. Tenorio announced Mendiola-Long’s resignation when the open session resumed in the afternoon.

She said she and the rest of the board members will inform Gov. Ralph DLG Torres about the resignation so that the governor can appoint a new member from Tinian.

Mendiola-Long was appointed by the governor in January 2019 to fill the Tinian seat on the board. There was no Tinian candidate for the BOE seat in the November 2018 elections.

As a BOE member, Mendiola-Long chaired the Fiscal, Personnel & Administration Committee and served as vice chairman of the Instructional Services & Assessment Committee.

In a statement, Mendiola-Long said:

“While it has been a distinct honor to serve as an appointed member of the Board of Education for the CNMI Public School System, it is with a heavy heart that I offered my resignation…today, Oct. 20, 2020.

“Although I will continue helping our CNMI education system in other roles in the coming years, it has become evident that I cannot juggle the current roles and responsibilities I currently have in order to give my absolute all to…PSS…now.

“I wish the CNMI Board of Education the best in the future months to come as they will be facing more challenging tasks and a daunting funding issue.  I do, however, have the utmost confidence in the hardworking people of the PSS administration, the principals and vice-principals, and teachers as I know they are up to any task to ensure our children are put first in all future decisions.

“It has been a rewarding honor to serve as your Board of Education member and I look forward to working with the next appointed BOE Member from Tinian soon. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you.”

Among the immediate reactions to the resignation came from PSS athletic program director Nick Gross who said, “Horrible news. Thank you for your time and effort, Phil”; and from Child Nutrition Program Director Dale Roberts who said, “Oh man, you are already missed, member Long.”

Prior to Mendiola-Long’s resignation, at least three PSS officials “exited” the school system: former accountability, research and evaluation senior director Lynette Villagomez who resigned on Sept. 30; and former associate commissioners  Charley Kenty and Kimo Rosario who resigned on July 31.

Rosario is now the Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery program manager of the Northern Marianas Housing Corp.

November 2020 pssnewsletter

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