Patch 2023 election profiles.
MANCHESTER, CT — Heather Doucette is running for a school board seat in the 2023 Manchester election.
How old will you be as of Election Day?
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Does your campaign have a website? If so, include the URL here.
What city or town do you live in?
What office are you seeking?
Board of Education
If you are running in a district, you can specify the district here.
Please give us your party affiliation.
BA in Psychology and BA in English, Barnard College - Columbia University. Master of Science, Early Childhood Education, CCSU
What is your occupation?
Program Manager, Bureau of Special Education, CT State Department of Education
Do you have a family? If so, please tell us about them.
I have two teenage sons who currently attend Manchester High School. My husband Jason is an attorney and a state representative for the 13th House District.
Does anyone in your family work in politics or government?
I work for a state agency and my husband is a state representative.
Have you ever held a public office, whether appointive or elective?
I was appointed to the Manchester Board of Education this past spring.
Now we'd like to ask a few questions about your reasons for running and your general views on politics and government. First, why are you seeking this office?
It was an honor to be appointed to the Manchester Public Schools Board of Education this past spring. I am fully committed to the success of our district. I believe that every student deserves access to exceptional learning opportunities, regardless of their background or circumstances. And I firmly believe that Manchester educators have the capacity and the will to provide these exceptional experiences for all students. I believe it is the Board of Education’s job to ensure that our schools have the resources necessary to provide these opportunities, not only in terms of money and materials, but also by enacting policies that are in equal parts equitable, innovative and in the best interest of students, families and the community. I have witnessed first hand the commitment of MPS educators, and the tremendous positive impact they have had on my own children. I want to help ensure that all Manchester students have that same experience. I look forward to working with the district leadership to build on the successes of Manchester Public Schools, as well as to address the challenges that lie ahead.
Please complete this statement: The single most pressing issue facing my constituents is ___, and this is what I intend to do about it.
I believe that we must focus on equity and inclusion in our district. This means ensuring that every student has access to the resources and support they need to succeed. It means providing opportunities for our students to learn about different communities and perspectives. And it means fostering a culture of respect, inclusivity, and kindness in our schools. These are the conditions necessary for our students to realize academic success and high achievement.
What are the major differences between you and the other candidates seeking this post?
I have over 20 years of experience working in the field of public education. I have worked as a preschool educator, early interventionist, district coordinator of assessment and research, program manager for professional learning, and currently serve as a program manager in the Bureau of Special Education at the CT State Department of Education. As my two children have attended Manchester Public Schools, I have spent countless hours in our schools, attending functions, volunteering for events and serving on committees. Even before serving on the board of education, I have taken every opportunity available to talk with teachers and with families to better understand the unique strengths as well as challenges of our school system.
If you are challenging an incumbent, in what way has the current officeholder failed the community?
I am not challenging an incumbent and I look forward to serving alongside Board of Education members who have been serving on the board for several years.
What other issues do you intend to address during your campaign?
I believe that we must engage and involve parents and the broader community in our school improvement efforts. We must create opportunities for families and community members to share their ideas, concerns, and aspirations for our schools. We must continue to build and strengthen partnerships with community organizations and businesses to provide our students with additional resources and opportunities. And we must ensure that our schools are safe, welcoming, and supportive environments for everyone. As a school board member, I promise to be a dedicated and passionate advocate for our students and our district, and will work collaboratively with my fellow board members, our educators and district staff, our families, and our community to ensure that our students receive the high-quality education they deserve.
What accomplishments in your past would you cite as evidence you can handle this job?
As I mentioned above, I have over 20 years of professional experience in the field of education. This includes rich experience facilitating strategic improvement efforts with a diverse array of stakeholders. I have a successful track record of bringing people to a place of mutual understanding in order to move forward with strategic planning. I look forward to bringing this skill set to my role as a Manchester Board of Education member.
What is the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Believe that change is possible. Otherwise, why would you bother getting up in the morning?
Is there anything else you would like voters to know about yourself and your positions?
Manchester is the most diverse school district in our state, and I see that as our greatest strength and asset. We must continue to be a school system that welcomes all and provides excellent educational opportunities for all. I will never stop being a champion and an advocate for our schools and our teachers.
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