City Republicans this November will be campaigning against incumbent members of the Working Families Party for elected school board seats. News release from the Bridgeport Republican Town Committee:
The Bridgeport Republicans are united in supporting the termination of Principal Carmen Perez Dixon and are appalled at the actions of three “Working Families Party” Board of Education members. Ms. Dixon who was found negligent by the CT DCF after three video tapes of her physically abusing young students at Jettie Tisdale School surfaced is currently standing before the BOE in a termination hearing.
The videos turned in to DCF by school security are said to feature Dixon in incidents that occurred between Feb. 9 and March 23, 2012 where she is shown “manhandling” children including dragging a kindergarten student down the hallway, and “physically threatening” kids including slamming a baseball bat down on a desk in front of a child. These videos were viewed by the board members sitting in on the hearing last Tuesday, however, the parents, press, and public have not been allowed access to the tapes because children in the images might be identified.
Dixon’s defense says, regarding the video tapes showing her “manhandling” and dragging two children, pulling children by the collar, etc… “It doesn’t tell you what happened before or after the videotape stopped rolling,” The Republican Party feels that it does not matter what happened before or after the tape stopped as there is no excuse for ever physically abusing a child especially a kindergarten student.
The Bridgeport administration also tried and failed to fire Dixon in 2009 after a court hearing, for reasons unknown to the Bridgeport RTC that unanimously voted in favor of publicly taking a stance against Dixon’s reinstatement on Tuesday.
In a strange turn of events on Monday, Attorneys for Dixon tried to get the case thrown out due to the fact that Superintendent Vallas was Superintendent at the time of the events in question. Three members of the Board actually voted in favor of throwing the case out and reinstating Dixon due to this frivolous loophole. John Bagley, Bobby Simmons and Sauda Baraka were the Board members who voted to immediately reinstate Dixon as a principle and seemed to try very hard in favor of forgetting everything that they saw on video. This comes as no surprise to the Bridgeport GOP as the hearing began with Sauda Baraka’s integrity coming into question as BOE Chair, Kenneth Moales, asked that she recuse herself from the hearings after allegedly witnessing Baraka and Dixon having private conversations.
Bridgeport Republicans find the votes of the three aforementioned Working Families Party Board Members to be reprehensible and utterly irresponsible. It certainly appears as though they have allowed politics and friendly favors to come before the very children that they were elected to educate and protect. If this Board reinstates Carmen Dixon Perez and allows even the possibility of continuing to violate children’s rights it will have solidified its perceived lack of integrity. Republicans in Bridgeport hope that voters will pay close attention to these hearings and remember how the Board members cast their votes when they cast theirs in November.