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Letter: Concern About Vetting of New West Hartford Board of Education Member

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To the Editor:

Bigotry has no place in West Hartford. Anti-semitism has no place in West Hartford. That said, it still rears its ugly head in our town. We try to make West Hartford inclusive and safe for all races, creeds, and religions but once again we have failed. Most recently, the West Hartford Board of Education appointed LaToya Fernandez to fill a vacant seat on the Board. She is also an endorsed candidate for the Board of Education on the Nov. 7 election.

What has been created is a radicalized far-left-leaning Board of Education which had selected and appointed to its membership an individual who supported a resolution condemning Israel which was replete with anti-semitic views. It called for the defunding and condemnation of the state of Israel. How can anyone support and give credence to a terrorist organization like Hamas whose intent is to obliterate the only democracy in the middle east in favor of a fascist and oppressive regime?

The West Hartford Board of Education makes this appointment without consideration of the voters and having no true oversight. The Board moves further to the left and in so doing, allows the future dissemination of lies to be perpetuated in our schools. The recent appointment of Ms. Fernandez on Sept. 5 is another example of this blind allegiance to what the majority party in town puts forth. Ms. Fernandez’s views and advocacy will affect her policy-making decisions. As a co-signer to a resolution in California demonizing Israel (Resolution in Support of HR-2590 The Palestinian Children and Families Act) she will be an influencer in her role as a Board of Education policymaker. Party politics have no place in the classroom conversation nor on the Board of Education.

The West Hartford Board of Education majority all voted to approve this appointment, while the minority party members abstained. The question posed is, can Ms. Fernandez separate her views from determining the policy which will shape the education of our children? The resolution which she co-signed and supported tends to show an advocacy that polarizes elements of our community.

What was the vetting process for this appointment? As a democracy, debate should have ensued and appointment tabled for further review. There was no debate! This event should call into question the leadership of Chairwoman Dr. Thomas-Farquharson, Vice Chair Steinberg and Secretary Neseralla. In our opinion, all should resign.

We share the frustrations that many people in our community feel about the process that occurred prior to this appointment. We must ask ourselves whether Ms. Fernandez should not be allowed to continue to serve as a member of the West Hartford Board of Education. We feel  that she should not be elected. A person’s political views go to the character of the individual. There was no apology for her support of the California resolution.  As a policymaker for our children and their educational development, this is a critical component for those who serve our town.

When you go to the polls on Nov. 7, vote for honesty, integrity, and transparency. You all have a choice.

Vote for the betterment of our school system and the development of all our children.

Roni Rodman and Kristyn Rosen-Jacobs
Candidates for BOE, A Connecticut Party – WEST HARTFORD

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