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Kevin Brown

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Kevin brown campaign headshot

Party: Democrat

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Age: 35

Marital Status: Married

Current Residence: Vernon

Current Job: Social Studies Teacher, CREC Public Safety Academy

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Education: B.A. Public Policy & Government, Eastern Connecticut State Univeresity; M.S. Secondary Education, University of Bridgeport

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Kevin-Brown-for-Vernon-Board-of-Education-1337797853013623/

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Why are you running for this office?
I am running for Vernon Board of Education because I believe in the power of public education. I am a parent of two small children in the Vernon Public School system and I want to improve the quality of education for them, as well as for all children in the Vernon-Rockville community. Additionally, I am a high school social studies teacher that believes a quality education has the power to transform lives. I believe that my role as both a parent and an educator provides me a unique perspective that is needed on the Vernon Board of Education.
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What is the most pressing local issue facing your community and how would you solve it (within the capacity of the office for which you are running)?
The most pressing issue facing schools in Vernon is the unfair perception that we are failing because we have been classified as an Alliance District by the state. First, and foremost, I would address this issue by working to communicate the wonderful accomplishments of our students and teachers across all of our schools with the Vernon-Rockville community at large. While there are some deficits within our schools, many of our students have made tremendous strides in reading and math achievement. We offer a well rounded 21st century curriculum across the district in an attempt to reach all learners and many of our schools feature very strong communities. However, we need to continue to work on meeting the needs of all learners and continuing to incorporate technology into the curriculum, as well as engaging families as partners in the learning process. We must also address some of the larger issues that have led to lower state standardized test scores, and thus our Alliance District status, including transiency and English language proficiency.
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With the state's ongoing budget crisis looming over the election, what are your plans for your community's budget? Is there anything you can do make your town less dependent on revenue from the state?
While Vernon does not stand to lose education funding under the proposed budget, it is important to engage all constituencies to improve the quality of our public schools. I would look to work with local non profit agencies to assist with raising funds to help offset costs of educating Vernon-Rockville students.
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The legislature has been debating various ideas to allow towns to raise revenue locally through something other than property taxes. If you could ease your residents' property tax burden by adding another method of taxation, is there anything you might consider for your town?
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Are you in favor of regionalizing more services in conjunction with other nearby communities? If so, which ones?
While Connecticut's towns have many unique characteristics and a desire for self government, it may be appropriate and necessary to consider regionalizing some services to provided greater resources, especially given recent budget shortfalls.
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Should your school district get the same amount of education funding from the state if your district's enrollment is dropping?
School enrollment has the potential to change, at times dramatically, from year to year. Therefore, funding for schools should only be reduced after a downward trend over a period of several years. If reduced, it should only be cut conservatively so as to leave the district fully able to educate the diverse population that it serves.
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What's one thing most people don't know about you?
I aim to live by the words of Mohandas K. Gandhi, "Be the change you wish to see in the world."