Carol Oleski

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Carol Oleski
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Former candidate for
Scranton Board of Education, At-large
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 5, 2013
Term limitsN/A
Campaign website
Carol Oleski campaign logo
Ballotpedia's school board candidate survey
Carol Oleski was a candidate for an at-large seat on the Scranton Board of Education. She lost in an election to the board as a Republican candidate against five other candidates on November 5, 2013.


Oleski is a paraprofessional with Northeast Educational Intermediate Unit (NEIU). She currently serves as the PTA Vice President for West Scranton High School. Oleski and her husband, Tom, have six children. She has also been a foster parent to more than one hundred children.[1]



See also: Scranton School District elections (2013)

Election results

General election
Scranton School District, At-large General Election, 4-year term, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democrat Green check mark transparent.pngRobert Casey 20% 8,987
     Democrat Green check mark transparent.pngMark McAndrew 19.1% 8,607
     Cross filed Green check mark transparent.pngCy Douaihy Incumbent 18.5% 8,328
     Cross filed Green check mark transparent.pngBob Sheridan Incumbent 16.9% 7,617
     Republican Bob Lesh Incumbent 13.1% 5,916
     Republican Carol Oleski 12.3% 5,530
     Nonpartisan Write-in 0.1% 24
Total Votes 45,009
Source: Lackawanna County, "MUNICIPAL/RETENTION ELECTION," accessed November 7, 2013 These results are unofficial and not certified. They will be updated once certified results are available.

Oleski placed second in the May 21 Republican primary and sixth in the May 21 Democratic primary.

Scranton School District, Republican Primary, May 21, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngBob Sheridan Incumbent 14.4% 907
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngCarol Oleski 12.9% 811
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngBob Lesh Incumbent 11.5% 724
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngCy Douaihy Incumbent 10.9% 682
     Republican Mark McAndrew 10.5% 659
     Republican Robert Casey 10.4% 653
     Republican Tom Borthwick 9.6% 604
     Republican James J. Timlin 8.8% 550
     Republican Tom Schuster 8.7% 546
     Republican Write-in votes 2.3% 145
Total Votes 6,281
Source: Lackawanna County Board of Elections

Scranton School District, Democratic Primary, May 21, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRobert Casey 12% 4,272
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngCy Douaihy Incumbent 11% 3,900
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngBob Sheridan Incumbent 10.6% 3,773
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngMark McAndrew 10.5% 3,727
     Democratic Bob Lesh Incumbent 9.8% 3,495
     Democratic Carol Oleski 8.4% 2,984
     Democratic Tom Schuster 8.2% 2,925
     Democratic Tom Borthwick 8.1% 2,872
     Democratic James J. Timlin 7% 2,492
     Democratic Kevin J. Manley 5.6% 1,980
     Democratic Todd Hartman 5.1% 1,818
     Democratic Douglas J. Miller 3.5% 1,234
     Democratic Write-in votes 0.3% 92
Total Votes 35,564
Source: Lackawanna County Board of Elections


Oleski ran for election to the board on November 5, 2013 against incumbents Cy Douaihy, Bob Lesh and Bob Sheridan as well as fellow challengers Robert Casey and Mark McAndrew.

Campaign finance

Oleski did not report any campaign contributions or expenditures to the Pennsylvania Department of State ahead of the November 5, 2013 general election.


Oleski had no published endorsements for the 2013 campaign.

Campaign themes


Oleski's campaign website provided themes for the 2013 election:[2]

If Elected to the Scranton School Board, I will focus on:

  • Improving Student Achievement
  • Spending Tax Dollars Efficiently

We need to make sure that every dollar we spend is used to improve academic outcomes for every student within our district.

Note: The above quote is from the candidate's website, which may include some typographical or spelling errors.

What was at stake?

Incumbents Cy Douaihy, Bob Lesh and Bob Sheridan sought re-election to full terms on the board. They were joined by Oleski, Robert Casey and Mark McAndrew in pursing four available seats on November 5, 2013. Voters also filled an unexpired two-year term left by the resignation of Sean O'Shea in April due to obligations in the Pennsylvania National Guard. The Lackawanna County Democratic Party selected Kyle Donahue as their candidate for the seat in September. Bob Lesh also pursued the unexpired term as the Republican candidate.[3]

Federal lawsuit by suspended principal

On October 25, 2013, suspended Robert Morris Elementary principal Gwendolyn Damiano filed a lawsuit in federal court against the district claiming deprivation of her right to due process. Damiano was suspended by the district on July 3, 2013 due to allegations that she failed to adequately oversee administration of state standardized tests in the school. The district was under investigation by the Pennsylvania Department of Education as cheating allegations clouded local schools. District officials suspended four teachers and recommended the firing of another teacher related to these investigations. The Board of Education overturned these suspensions and prevented the firing.[4]

Her lawsuit claims that the district failed to provide a timely appeal of her suspension due to the upcoming school board election. Damiano's lawsuit accuses five board members including Cy Douaihy, Bob Lesh and Bob Sheridan of delaying her September 19, 2013 appeal hearing to avoid embarrassment ahead of the election. The board held three preliminary hearings in August and early September but cancelled the September 19 hearing without rescheduling the meeting.[4]

About the district

See also: Scranton School District, Pennsylvania
Scranton School District is located in Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania
Scranton School District serves K-12 students in Scranton, the county seat of Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania. Scranton had a population of 76,089 according to the 2010 U.S. Census.[5]


Scranton lagged behind state rates for higher education achievement, median income and poverty according to the 2010 U.S. Census. The percentage of city residents over 25 years old (19.2%) was lower than the state average (26.7%). The 2010 U.S. Census calculated a median income of $36,968 in Scranton and $51,651 in the state of Pennsylvania. Scranton had a poverty rate of 20.4% in 2010 while Pennsylvania's poverty rate was 12.6%.[5]

Recent news

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