At this point, sudden resignations have become a perennial event for the Bridgeport Board of Education. Since 2014, two members abruptly ended their terms. Former Chair Dave Hennessy will be the third.
According to the Connecticut Post, Hennessey handed in his letter of resignation to the city clerk’s office on Tuesday morning, after quietly leaving Monday night’s meeting early.
As of yet, Hennessey’s reasons for leaving are unknown, but it wouldn’t come as any surprise if it had something to do with the turmoil and infighting that’s dominated BOE meetings as of late.
Hennessey won his seat back in 2013, a part of a Democrat-Working Families Party coalition that beat out the endorsed democrat slate. The coalition quickly fell apart once elected. Since then, he switched party affiliation, from Democrat to Republican. Recent history has shown that this may affect the process.
When John Bagley resigned in 2014 the board had difficulty filling his seat due to questions of who qualifies. This happened because the board bylaws and the city charter both state that vacant positions on the school board must be filled by a someone from the same political party as the person who resigned.
Much like Hennessey, Bagley’s party affiliation didn’t match the ticket he was elected on, though the big difference in Bagley’s case, is he was elected as a member of the Working Families Party, which complicated matters further.
Either way, Hennessey’s resignation likely means for the next 30 days contentious decisions will be split 4-4 — Not great timing for a district that’s facing a looming budget deficit and other pressing issues.
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