Vitale was chosen from a pool of three applicants during the board’s Nov. 8 meeting. The other candidates were Ethel Grant, a retired administrator from W.F. Kaynor Technical High School in Waterbury, and Doug Towne, president of the Parent School Council.
Vitale said that when he heard that Brackett retired, he didn’t give it much thought until he realized how difficult it would be to bring a new board member up to speed with everything that is going on in such a short amount of time.
“I am familiar with the district, familiar with the policies, and familiar with the people. So, I thought I would offer to help as a temp,” Vitale said.
Brackett resigned last month to take a job in the school system as a family advocate for the Head Start program.
Vitale, who works as an Outside claims representative at the Hartford, originally joined the board when he had three children in the district at the same time. He served on the board for 15 years prior to resigning in 2011 to run for burgess. He lost in a Democratic primary.
He said as of right now he has no plans to run for reelection at the end of this term.
Vitale said that the board is important because, as in every town, the school budget is a large expense.
“We need to be sure were spending money wisely and in the right areas and supporting what is needed for the parents and the students,” Vitale said.
Board of Education Chairman David Heller said that, while all of the applicants would have been good choices for the position, Vitale was the best choice.
Board member Glenn Connan was elected the new secretary.