She has only two months remaining on the Board of Education, but Connecticut Working Families Party spitfire Maria Pereira is not walking away quietly. Pereira and Paul Vallas engaged in another exchange Tuesday night over the appointment of assistant principals. Pereira, the new Bridgeport WFP chair, dropped a salvo promising things are going to change in December, a reference to the new school board makeup poised to challenge the school chief. The super responded to Pereira in part … “the level of misinformation that comes out of your mouth is absolutely incredible.”
Democratic and Working Families Party candidates for school board are not members of the Vallas fan club. The Connecticut Supreme Court will decide if Vallas has the proper legal certification to serve a state school district. What if the Supremes don’t make that decision until after the new school board is seated? Assuming the anti-Vallas faction controls the school board, is it prudent to wait on a decision rather than blow him out? If the Supremes uphold the lower court ruling that declared Vallas’ contract illegal presumably Vallas will be owed nothing.
But what if the Supremes rule for Vallas? Does the new board send him packing? If so, what Vallas initiatives do they also reject? The $11 million federal grant for the new regional magnet school? The $1 million state grant for school security? Chromebooks for every high school student? What about the money teed up for a high school to replace Harding?
Do they fire the man and embrace some of his initiatives? Does that mean they don’t like the man but liked what he did?
Pereira decided not to seek another four-year term this year. Some say she was too much of a lightning rod in the WFP quest to control the school board. Or maybe she had enough of the battles herself? Either way, she’s not going away quietly. And she’ll likely be a presence at school board meetings even when she’s off the board. Maybe she and Vallas will engage just for old time’s sake.