Parental rights group Darien Parents warned about an alleged plan by the Darien Board of Education to secretly interview candidates and unilaterally fill a vacant seat on the BOE.
The group said the move marked a significant departure from past precedent where input from the applicable town party organization would be sought.
Instead, the BOE decided to unilaterally select a replacement for the vacant seat left by Tara Wurm through a closed door interview process without seeking input from the community, and without time for community review.
The BOE is planning to interview candidates at 5:30pm on September 26, 2023, during the Executive Session. The BOE then plans to vote on the replacement that same evening at 7:30pm during the regularly scheduled meeting.
The move leaves absolutely no time for input from the community, or even review of the candidates before the vote.
Darien Parents wonders why a democratically elected official's seat would be filled through a secretive, undemocratic process.
"Why has BOE Chairperson Duke Dineen, who is not seeking reelection in November, making such big decisions in the shadows away from the public? Why are other Board members, including Vice Chair Jill McCammon, supporting this rushed, clandestine effort to fill this seat through November 2024? Shouldn’t this be a thoughtful and deliberate process with all stakeholders uniting to work together?" wondered the Parents.
Community members previously cited frustrations with the BOE over lack of transparency. But rather than listening to constituents, it seems the Board has doubled down on secrecy with this move!