BOE special meeting; talk continues about member’s Twitter post

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By TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER

STAFF WRITER

A special meeting of the Plainville Board of Education was held on Monday, Mar. 11, to discuss “the performance of a board member.” According to Superintendent Maureen Brummett, the meeting was held in executive session and no action was taken, but she was unable to comment further.

Brummett did not say which board member was the center of discussions.

In Feb., BOE vice chair, Nicole Palmieri, became the center of state-wide attention regarding a tweet she sent while serving as the campaign manager for Bill Wadsworth, a Republican running for State Senate to represent the fifth district.

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It was reported that Wadsworth fired Palmieri over the tweet, which was referred to as anti-semitic, for the depiction of Sen. Richard Blumenthal and Democratic candidate for State Senate, Derek Slap, with the caption “Even Dick isn’t safe from Slap’s money grabbing.”

Palmieri released a statement on Twitter which reads, “I decided to step away from the campaign to not draw attention away from the serious issues facing voters… I’m shocked and saddened my tweet was used as a diversion from the issues at hand.” Neither tweet has been removed.

During the regularly scheduled monthly meeting, several Plainville residents commented on the tweet, including Linden Street School music teacher, Marilyn Speranza.

Speranza said she had never criticized the BOE in the past, but felt “disheartened and personally offended” by Palmieri’s tweet.

In addition to giving her students a musical education, Speranza said she helps the children develop character. She referenced the school-wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) program, which “helps students to learn how to show cooperation, positive attitude, respect, and empathy.”

“I feel that the children of Plainville should look at elected officials and see the embodiment of these character traits,” said Speranza. “I feel that my work as an educator to foster a culture of acceptance is being undone. I’m astonished that an elected official would not apologize for offending her fellow community members.”

To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Taylor Murchison-Gallagher, email her at TMurchison@BristolObserver.com.