As the new face on the Board of Education, Michael Harman wants to help reach a balance between regular education and special education funding as well as implement a foreign language program.

"My goal in pursuing the position is two-fold," Harman said. "I have a concern in the way the special education program has been impacting the regular education budget and I want to implement a foreign language program."

Regarding the foreign language program, Harman said he believed the best approach would be to have the program operate on a rotational schedule.

"There are several approaches that can be taken, but we could use a rotational schedule which would start at the high school and then filter down to the other schools," he said. "Being able to bring in the program on a rotational basis would allow for more consistency."

Harman, who has two children in the public school system, said he observed the Tokeneke restoration process and became interested in becoming more involved.

"I was the budget representative for Tokeneke, and I have seen the budget difficulties from both the BOE perspective and the Representative Town Meeting," he said. "I think there is always a desire for more funding and to use that funding more efficiently."

If elected, Harman said he would look at ways to maximize the funding the schools receive without significantly impacting services.

"I'm interested in trying to help maintain costs and bring in efficiencies," he said. "I'm afraid the state mandates for special education will crowd out regular education."

As he prepares to join the BOE, Harman said he would need to brush up on the policy manual.

"I'm definitely going to need to learn the policy manual," he said.