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To the Editor:
On January 14th, the 132nd district in Fairfield will be voting to fill the recently vacated seat in the CT Legislature. Both candidates claim to be “pro-education” and promise to support Fairfield public schools while in Hartford.
But, forget the promises… take a look at the RECORD.
Jennifer Leeper: During her two years on the Board of Education, Leeper has fought passionately to raise the level of educational excellence in Fairfield. In that short time she has:
(1) created and chaired the Board’s Finance Committee which tackles operating budget challenges while exploring revenue generating opportunities and operational efficiencies
(2) spearheaded a Math Academy for our highest achieving elementary school math students
(3) staunchly defended the renovation and expansion of Mill Hill to a 504 capacity so that our investment in that school was both financially sound and appropriately long-term and
(4) worked to raise awareness for the importance of financial literacy for our high schoolers.
Brian Farnen: On the other hand, has voted to decrease the funding requests advanced by the BOE.
(1) In 2016, RTM member, Farnen objected to the teacher’s contract and voted to send it to arbitration – which cost the Town $90,000 in fees and resulted in no change to the terms of the contract. Then, in 2018, Farnen once again objected to the proposed teacher’s contract as “too rich” – a position that was thankfully not supported by the majority of the RTM’s members. In both instances, teachers had agreed to receive increases equal to the average for all Fairfield County – hardly extravagant.
(2) He has voted for every cut to the BOE’s operating budget proposed by the Republican Party.
Our quality teachers deserve reasonable compensation and responsible budgets. Forget the promises. Look at their records. The choice is clear. We need Jennifer Leeper representing us in Hartford.
-- Philip Dwyer
Past Chair, Fairfield Board of Education