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|Board Member, New Bedford School Committee, At-large|
|Elections and appointments|
|Last election||November 5, 2013|
|First elected||November 5, 2013|
|Next general||November, 2015|
|Appointed||October 22, 2012|
|Appointed by||City Council and School Committee|
|High school||New Bedford High School|
|Bachelor's||University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth|
|Profession||Small business owner|
Bruce Oliveira resides in New Bedford, Massachusetts. He is a current at-large member of the School Committee, and he was appointed on October 22, 2012 to fill a vacancy on the board. Oliveira attended New Bedford High School and received a B.S. degree from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth in Business Administration and Management. He spent the first 21 years of his career with IBEW Local 223 Health, Pension and Annuity Funds before retiring as an administrative manager in 2009. From 1999 through most of 2012, Oliveira also served as a tax consultant for JL Warren & Co. He currently serves as the Housing Authority board chairman and owner of his own tax preparation and accounting firm.
Bruce Oliveira ran unopposed to win an at-large seat with a two-year term in the general election on November 5, 2013. Due to the lack of opposition, he won the seat by default.
Oliveira began the race with an existing account balance of $5,523.57 from his previous campaign. He reported $0.00 in contributions and $170.00 in expenditures to the City of New Bedford, which left his campaign with $5,353.57 on hand.
Bruce Oliveira did not receive any official endorsements for his campaign.
What was at stake?
Incumbents Jack Nobrega, John Fletcher and Bruce Oliveira announced that they would file for re-election. Oliveira ran unopposed for a two-year term, all other candidates competed for three seats with three-year terms. On August 13, incumbent Lawrence J. Finnerty announced that he would seek municipal office rather than re-election to the School Committee, which left one board seat vacant. South Coast Today journalist Natalie Sherman notes that Finnerty was an independent voice on the board, and that, ."..his retirement could shift the internal dynamics of the board." However, Fletcher and Finnerty both ultimately decided to reverse their decisions. Five challengers, Brian Pastori, Josh Amaral, Christopher A. Cotter, Maria H. Mojica-Mosquea and Michael Janson also filed for the four available School Committee seats. In the end, both incumbents, Nobrega and Fletcher, retained their seats and Amaral won a seat on the board.
In August, 2013, Superintendent Pia Durkin announced that the school district would be laying off more than 200 employees, including 150 teachers. These cuts came in response to significant budgetary problems within the district, and Superintendent Durkin has confirmed that these cuts are final and will not be reversed, unlike layoffs in previous years. Following the announcement of the cuts, Superintendent Durkin admitted that the cuts "created a great deal of angst" in the community. The school district also has "one of the worst records in the state in terms of student test scores and graduation rates." The school board has voted to open an "innovation school" to address academic performance issues in the district, which resulted in a backlash from challenger Josh Amaral and the local teachers union, the New Bedford Educators Association.
Oliveira initially voted for a different superintendent candidate than Durkin, but later changed his vote to align with the majority of the board. After the board appointed Durkin, Oliveira stated, "I have every intention of supporting Dr. Durkin 150 percent," and added that the School Committee would need "to recognize that we have to allow our superintendent to do her job."
About the districtBristol County, Massachusetts. The county seat of Bristol County is Taunton. According to the 2010 US Census, Bristol County is home to 551,082 residents.
Bristol County underperformed the rest of Massachusetts in terms of its poverty rate, median rates of average household income and higher education achievement in 2011. The poverty rate in Bristol County was 11.3% compared to 10.7% for the entire state. The median household income in Bristol County was $55,813 compared to $65,981 for the state of Massachusetts. The US Census also found that 25.1% of Bristol County residents aged 25 years and older attained a Bachelor's degree compared to 38.7% in Massachusetts.
Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100.0%. Each column will add up to 100.0% after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages.
This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term "Bruce + Oliveira + New + Bedford + Public + School"
- All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.
- Natalie Sherman, South Coast Today, "Unopposed School Committee member Bruce Oliveira stresses 'reality' in politics," October 30, 2013
- Charis Anderson, South Coast Today, "Oliveira easily elected to fill vacancy on New Bedford School Committee," October 23, 2012
- LinkedIn, "Bruce J Oliveira," accessed August 19, 2013
- City of New Bedford, "Campaign Disclosures," accessed February 11, 2014
- New Bedford Guide, "2013 New Bedford Elections," accessed November 5, 2013
- Natalie Sherman, South Coast Today, "Municipal elections housekeeping," August 13, 2013
- Natalie Sherman, South Coast Today, "Observers point to possibility of turnover in New Bedford School Committee election," July 13, 2013
- Jim Phillips, WBSM, "Durkin: 2013 Will Be Challenging School Year," August 8, 2013
- Natalie Sherman, South Coast Today, "Pia Durkin wastes no time tackling New Bedford's school problems," August 4, 2013
- Natalie Sherman, South Coast Today, "Durkin wins superintendent job," March 12, 2013
- United States Census Bureau, "Bristol County, Massachusetts," accessed August 16, 2013
- Massachusetts Secretary of State, “Enrollment Breakdown as of 2/15/2012,” accessed August 7, 2013
- United States Census Bureau, "Frequently Asked Questions," accessed April 21, 2014