Letter — Tesoro will maintain school excellence, fiscal discipline

Wynn Gadkar-Wilcox
Full letter available here

Over 13 years ago, my wife Sujata and I moved into our new home in Trumbull. While we had considered many other places to live, we chose Trumbull because of its outstanding public schools. We were both the products of excellent public education systems, and we looked forward to affording our two daughters the same opportunities we enjoyed. Now, many years later, with our oldest daughter now in Middlebrook School and our younger daughter not far behind, we worry about a still-excellent school system imperiled by budget uncertainty in Hartford and here in Trumbull.

Fortunately, first selectman candidate Vicki Tesoro has an education program that will ensure the quality of Trumbull schools for years to come. Her education platform calls for a focus on curriculum development to keep our teachers current, increased access to AP and honors courses, world languages in elementary school, expanding access to the arts, and small class sizes. These are the steps that are necessary for Trumbull school systems to remain competitive in state and national rankings with our neighboring school districts. Retaining a broad-based, quality education is not only necessary for our children. It also ensures that our quality education system will continue to attract businesses and young families who are interested in relocating to Trumbull, which ensures the continued viability of our tax base. Maintaining quality education is therefore important for all citizens of Trumbull, not just those with children in the school system.

In the short term, Vicki Tesoro has a common-sense plan to see our schools through a period of uncertainty stemming from the budgetary chaos in Hartford. To shield our schools from suffering from the budget impasse or any possible catastrophic cuts in state aid, she would put education first by first allocating contingency funds, then by making non-essential spending reductions in town budgets, then by ensuring that any cuts to education spending minimize the impact on our students by cutting non-instructional areas first. In short, Vicki knows how to focus on maintaining the quality of our curriculum while simultaneously maintaining fiscal discipline.

Vicki Tesoro’s extensive experience in Trumbull’s education system inform her complete and thoughtful plans for keeping Trumbull schools competitive. She is a past president of the Trumbull Parent-Teacher-Student Association Council, past PTA president of Tashua School, Madison Middle School, and Trumbull High School, and a former member of the Trumbull Board of Education’s Policy Advisory Committee. She is also a founding member of the Trumbull Partnership against Underage Drinking and Drugs (TPAUD), an organization whose work became a model for similar programs throughout Fairfield County.

I urge Trumbull residents who care about education to take a close look at Vicki Tesoro’s education platform, which puts students first while maintaining fiscal responsibility. As First Selectman in Trumbull, Vicki would ensure the same quality public education for which Trumbull has become known for generations in the future.