Below you can read the statements of each of the four Candidates that are applying for the PTO Council position.   Once you have read the statements, Please select the Vote Button below to cast your vote.

2 Year Position

Patty Bechard

I’d be very interested in serving on the West El School Council.   I have a son in 6th grade at West Middle who attended West El and I have another son currently in the 4th grade at West El.   As a resident of Andover for over 12 years with plans to be resident for at least another 12 years, the near-term and long-term future of West El matters to our family.   I’ve enjoyed being a part of the West El community as a classroom volunteer, a PTO volunteer, and a 3-year Destination Imagination team manager guiding students in creative problem solving through teamwork.  I am also the co-creator of an after-school enrichment program for 4th and 5th graders interested in business.    With an MBA, I have a background in business and marketing, primarily in brand management and product strategy for consumer-focused companies including Amazon.com and Gillette.  Over the years, I have enjoyed applying analytical and strategic thinking to projects that have benefitted school districts both in Boston and Seattle and I have had the privilege of teaching English to college sophomores at the Korean Military Academy in Seoul.   Today, I’d welcome the privilege to serve on the West El School Council for a two-year term.



Maria Policelli

Hi, I write to you as a parent of Charlotte Hatch,  a kindergartener in Ms. Messina's class. I also have a son Benjamin Hatch who is three years old and will be following his big sister's footsteps soon enough. Therefore, I am invested as a Mom and as a member of our community in supporting the institutional growth and educational goals and needs of West Elementary's student body, faculty and staff.  Besides wearing my "Mom" hat, I am an an orthopedic physician assistant at Lawrence General Hospital. I spend my days taking care of patients who have had elective procedures or orthopedic traumas.  I am involved in multiple initiatives at the hospital focused on improving hospital efficiency, flow, patient care and outcome measures as well as personally participating in this year's cohort for the Healthcare Leadership Program. This is just one example of how dedicated I am to both personal/institutional growth and improvement.

I carry that same attitude and dedication in all that I do and would love the opportunity to become a more contributing member of this community as part of the School Council at West Elementary. I would be interested in either the two or three year term as I am invested in the long-term growth and success of of our student body, West Elementary and our community.  Thank you for your consideration.  Regards, Maria Policelli




3 Year Position


Micaela Zilberberg

My name is Micaela Zilberberg and would like to be consider for the openning on the West El school council . I am a parent of Sofia and Lucas; a sencond and kindergardner at West Elmentary. I have a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology and I am license mental health counselor.  I have worked in serveral shcool settings including an after school program in the city of Cambridge and as a counsultant for preschool teachers. I’ve also have worked in Argentina for the health care sector in the field of  quality assurance. I am currently home raising our children; therefore I would be able to fulfill the time commiment this position requires. Furthermore, I will commit to a three year term. I am passionate about improving our children’s lives and  I am interested in this position because it has a direct impact on the lives of the children attending West Elementary. 


Murtaza Hafizji

My name is Murtaza Hafizji and I would be privileged to serve on the West Elementary School Council for a term of (3) years.  I graduated from Andover High School in 1999, completed my Bachelor’s degree in Information Technology from UMASS and am now pursuing an MBA at Northeastern University.  I live in Andover with my wife and two children.  My daughter is in second grade at West El and my son is in pre-school in Andover. I am a product marketer and work at a cybersecurity company in Bedford. 

Providing the best education and the right learning environment is a top priority for me as a parent.  West El certainly provides that, and as a parent, I want to be part of the School Council to leverage my experience and work with the West El school leadership in formulating the most successful educational program for our children and actively support the school in meeting the educational, social and recreational needs of our children.  Additionally, technology is a part of our and our children’s lives.  There is no reason why we should not use it to our advantage.  I feel I can add to the School Council by working with the school leadership in best leveraging technology at West El to advance our children’s potential.Thank you.Sincerely,  Murtaza Hafizji