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Board of Education Committee Selection

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Board of Education Rejects Diversity

Stratford School Board Selects Sub-Committee Members at Special Meeting
Chairman Mike Henricks Complains of Previous “Unfairness” to Justify Present Committees and Subcommittees
Minutes from January 4th Special Meeting

STRATFORD PUBLIC SCHOOLS: INCLUDE ⬩ ENGAGE ⬩ INSPIRE

That is a posting from the Board of Education website, and is intended to reflect how the Stratford Public Schools should operate.

On January 4, 2024, the Stratford Board of Education held a special meeting at 6:00 p.m. to select Chairs and members, both elected and community, to several sub-committees of the Board for School Year 2024-25. Committees included were: Finance, Plant and Planning, Curriculum Committee, Policy, By-laws, Personnel Committee.

Chris Cormier proposed a five minute delay before voting on committees as they just received the list without time to review. Chair indicated that he just received the full list on the previous night. After a five minute recess, Board members returned from caucus. Democratic Board member Chris Cormier voiced concern that they had not seen the list, except for Finance committee, before this meeting, and that only one suggested member, submitted by member Lisa Carroll-Fabian, was actually put on the list. Mr. O’Brien commented that he had been approached by the Chair for his selection of committees and members, and felt the process was fair.

Lisa Carroll-Fabian reported that, in the past, there were always members of both parties as Chairs and Co-Chairs of the committees.  Jill DeAngelo Powers noted that “This time the minority party has zero representation on the Chairs or co-Chairs.” She stated that the Chair, Michael Henrick, had said that the new board would be focused on moving in a new direction, and would operate with fairness. She indicated a lack of fairness with the selection of committee chairs and members. Mr. Henrick responded to her that he did act with fairness.

The Chair indicated that the minority members were not treated fairly the last two years, and that they were going to institute a new path and direction for the Board. He indicated that he did not think the last committees were effective.

Ms Carroll-Fabian suggested that the board and committees do not represent the makeup of our town, and there is not really any diversity in the members of these committees.” she stated. Mr. Henrick replied: “…well maybe next time you guys [Democrats] can put up more diverse candidates for your election.”

A vote was then taken and approved 4-3 along party lines.

The Board went into executive session to discuss personnel matters and returned to adjourn the special meeting.

The link to this YouTube recording : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgmpNQ1OW1I

Note: Historically the BOE has had an imbalance, however given the diversity of town residents and school age children the imbalance should be corrected.  We must do better for our children and lead by example!

The new Committees and members are listed below:

Personnel

Kristen Bedell, Jim Connor, Lisa Caroll-Fabian, Vacant

Finance

Kristen Bedell (Chair), Michael Henrick, Sean Kennedy, Lisa Carroll-Fabian, Christopher Cormier, Jill D’Angelo-Powers, William O’Brien, Ben Branyan (community), Susan Lance (community), Chris Pia (community)

By-Laws

Michael Henrick, Kristen Bedell, John Florek, Jill D’Angelo-Powers

Plant Planning

Michael Henrick (Chair), William O’Brien, Alan Llewellyn, Pete Caroll, Rich Fredette, Jill D’Angelo-Powers

Naming Committee

William O’Brien, Jill D’Angelo-Powers, Christopher Cormier, Denise Dunbar (teacher), Heather Borges (Ex Officio), Michael Henrick (Ex Officio), Vacant (Administrator), Vacant (Parent), Vacant (resident)

Athletic Review

Sean Kennedy (Chair), William O’Brien, Lisa Caroll-Fabian, Alec Voccola (Community), Catherine Proto (Sterling House), Rob Santos (Community), Wayne Thrall (BHS Athletic Director), Anthony DeAngelo (SHS Athletic Director),

Curriculum Committee

Sean Kennedy, Lisa Carroll-Fabian, Theresa Sheehy (Chair), Tori Florek (former Administrator), Andreas Marangos (teacher SHS), Jessica Carrey, Dr. Katie Graf (Administrator SHS), Jessica Tsichies (SPS)

Policy Review

William O’Brien(Chair), Michael Henrick, Christopher Cormier, Jack Dellapiano (Administrator SHS), Dr. Diana Dilorio (Administrator Nichols), Jess Morelli (Social Worker EWES), Marina Ciccarini (Middle School Counselor), Susan Birge (Community)

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