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Elementary school PTO leader announces run for Utica school district board of education

Posted 4/1/22

UTICA — Tennille Knoop has announced her candidacy for a seat on the Utica City School District’s board of education, running on a platform of Accountability, Communication, and Transparency …

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Elementary school PTO leader announces run for Utica school district board of education

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UTICA — Tennille Knoop has announced her candidacy for a seat on the Utica City School District’s board of education, running on a platform of Accountability, Communication, and Transparency (ACT). 

“As a mother, taxpayer, and community activist, I’m seeking a seat on the Utica City School Board to offer a new voice to the conversation, both as a parent and a proud Utican,” Knoop said.

“For far too long, our schools have undeservedly received a less than stellar reputation. My intention in running is to bring about change that will help repair and restore that reputation to its rightful place of pride and excellence. It’s time to ‘ACT Now!,’” she added. 

Knoop is the owner of T.K.Millo & Co., a creative agency and content provider. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English and will complete a master’s in writing program from John Hopkins University in December.  

Knoop has served as president of Albany Elementary’s PTO for six years and has been involved for nine years. During that time, she notes that Albany PTO has brought in STEAM museums, purchased tables, and materials for students and educators, ordered personalized masks and lanyards for each student and staff when they returned to school after remote learning, implemented fundraising programs that enabled students to take field trips, and maintained two scholarship funds for Proctor High School graduates. Prior to the COVID pandemic, Knoop was working with another Utica school to create its own PTO. 

“I’ve continually strived to collaborate with other dedicated parents to bring a variety of learning opportunities to students. It is a deeply satisfying and rewarding demonstration of my immeasurable passion for our students and my appreciation for the work of their dedicated teachers and support staff,” said Knoop.

“As president of the PTO, working directly with parents, students, and faculty has also allowed me to better understand their wants and needs. The contributions to our school and our district could never have been made without working closely with parents, learning about our students’ varied cultures and belief systems, and listening to everyone’s ideas so that we could create a body that reflected the best interests of all. I am confident I can bring the same approach and mindset to the school board.” 

Knoop intends to amplify the citizens’ voices and provide an added layer of oversight to the board with her ACT Now! platform and campaign messaging. Her goals include strengthening the relationship between the City of Utica and the Utica City School District in order to build a more robust foundation for economic growth in the Utica area, and working within the district to better integrate support staff, social workers, parent liaisons, and health and wellness professionals.  

“When we invest in our students, we invest in our community’s future,” Knoop said. “It’s time for Utica schools to stand out and shine brilliantly once again; for students to proudly hold their heads up high in honor of their success, only made possible because of the highly-qualified educators and the learning tools and resources the Utica community provides. We have to strive to be better so that our students can do better.”

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