The mayor admits to being most proud of his work early in his municipal career to eliminate inequities in the number of low-income students in each elementary school. In the former Washington-Beadle School, he told Leighton, 78 percent of the students were eligible for free and reduced lunches.
“The kids and the teachers didn’t have a chance in that environment,” he said.
Yes, replacing Scanlon will be difficult. But it is important to note that the successes of his administration were not his alone. Beverly has been fortunate to have a number of smart, innovative and dedicated city councilors, School Committee members and department heads over the last several years, and the hope here is those people will step up and make a bid for the mayor’s third-floor office. Already, School Committee President Maria Decker, City Councilor Scott Houseman, and former City Councilor and state Rep. Mike Cahill have expressed interest in running.
The early interest bodes well for the city’s chances of sustaining its continued improvement under Scanlon’s leadership.