On a party-line vote, with Democrats backing Governor Malloy and Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman’s nominee for the State Board of Education, the General Assembly’s Executive and Legislative Nominations Committee approved by a margin of 10 to 4 to confirm Erik Clemons for a position on the State Board of Education. Clemons is the individual whose company is collecting in excess of $500,000 thanks to a no-bid contract that was mandated by the State Board of Education and funded through the State Department of Education.
There is no word, at this point, as to why the Democrats felt there was no conflict of interest for a member of the State Board of Education and his company to collect money that is allocated and managed by the State Department of Education and its Board.
Erik Clemons is also a major supporter of the charter school industry, having served on the Board of Directors of the Achievement First, Inc. Elm City charter school and as a founding member of the new Elm City Montessori Charter School Board of Directors.
The State Board of Education is responsible for funding and regulating Connecticut’s charter schools.
If the General Assembly follows the committee’s lead, Connecticut’s charter schools will not only have one of their own sitting in that key oversight position, but that person will also be collecting well over $100,000 a year, thanks in part, to the flow of money from the State Department of Education.
The vote tally can be found here- https://www.cga.ct.gov/2016/exndata/cv/2016CV-00017-R00EXN-TS.htm