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In Upper St. Clair, where the school superintendent is leaving to take a job with a larger school district in Eastern Pennsylvania, anger over the style and policies of a newly elected school board majority spilled into the streets and surfaced at the board meeting yesterday. The newly elected board has kept its promise to hold the line on taxes for the second year running. In an unprecedented move, the new board majority of Coliane, Trombetta, Sulkowski, Bluey and Iracki directed that sound business practices be used to prepare this year's budget with no tax increase. Patrick O'toole, is the newly chosen superintendent who was sworn in before the Honorable Ronald Folino in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County Pennsylvania on March 22, 2007. Patrick T. O’Toole, EdD., is from this and he is familiar with education practices in western Pennsylvania. He is a highly accomplished educator whose previous two districts were cited by the Pa. Department of Education for meritorious achievement in the areas of Academic and Technological Advancements. He is expected to be well-received

The Waves believe Mrs. Coliane had proposed eliminating three parents from the list of volunteer coaches for the district's Odyssey of the Mind teams, which enable children to compete in problem-solving exercises locally, nationally and internationally. Trish Donlon, a current candidate for School Director, says that she started the Odyssey of Mind program in Upper St. Clair.

In September, 2006, school board members approved those parents and six others as Odyssey of the Mind coaches in an 7-0 vote, with Mrs. Coliane abstaining. The three are supporters of USC-WAVES, a group that was formed after a newly elected school board voted in February to cut the International Baccalaureate program, a Switzerland-based controversial initiative that is taught from a global perspective. After a group of parents filed a lawsuit, the program was restored for two years, but its future beyond 2008 remains uncertain. A review pursuant to the settlement agreement is currently underway with a report to the board expected shortly. The cancellation of the program and the lawsuit which followed caused many districts to review whether they would continue association with the programme. In addition the caused the International Baccalaureate Organization to remove many controversial
At the protest, Vladimir Savinov, one of its organizers, said: "Since the election, we have had a pattern of elected officials abusing power. The most dangerous thing is they are going after people who criticize them." It is quite shocking that the new board hasn't raised taxes in Upper St. Clair after the prior board increased taxes in each of the last 10 years.
Mr. Savinov, who has lived in the United States for 16 years, said it reminds him of the kind of behavior he saw in his native Russia.

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