Megan DeSombre, who publishes the Education Bridgeport website, shares her take and video from Tuesday night’s meeting about a much-needed new high school that the Working Families Party-controlled school board turned into a political snowball fight. Will the power-hungry WFP demagogues prevail?
Last night’s Board of Education Facilities Committee Meeting was “open to the public.” Unfortunately, the broader community was never sent the memo. Apparently, this trifling concern didn’t stop Facilities Committee chair and Working Families Party puppet John Bagley from ceding the floor to his buddies, who used the opportunity to tug on some serious heart strings. Carmen Lopez, retired judge-turned-activist and not a member of the board, opened the meeting for Bagley. (Just in case you were wondering who’s calling the shots.)
The meeting then went on to an extended public session, where former board member and current Working Families Party leader Maria Pereira plus outspoken anti-Finch activist Clyde Nicholson made outlandish claims about the proposed Harding High School site.
The Working Families Party contingent claims the Boston Ave. former GE site is far too contaminated and dangerous to house a school. Reminding the audience, repeatedly, that children’s lives are at stake.
Interestingly, they came to this conclusion before looking at any of the site reports, or hearing from the city’s environmental consultant or state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) who were all present at the meeting.
All the experts, however, were not allowed to speak until the “public” could voice their wild speculations.
According to the city’s environmental consultant and the two representatives from the DEEP, you know, the people who actually know what they’re talking about, GE must submit remediation plans to the state. The state must approve these plans and will come in and test the site before it’s approved for residential use. This has to happen before a high school is built.
While it’s completely understandable to be concerned about the prospect of building a high school on a brownfield site, it was clear from the beginning that the Working Families Party aim was to fan the fires of discontentment.
They came in, scripts in hand, ready to put on a show.
Sadly, the Working Families Party’s political maneuvering might cost East End and East Side students a school.