Sue Haynie

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Sue Haynie
Sue Haynie.jpg
Norwalk Board of Education, At-large
Former member
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 5, 2013
First electedNovember 2009
Term limitsN/A
Associate'sParsons School of Design
Bachelor'sCharter Oak State College
Office website
Sue Haynie served as an at-large member of the Norwalk Board of Education from 2009 to 2013. She lost re-election to the board as a Republican candidate against nine other candidates on November 5, 2013.


Haynie earned an A.A.S. at the Parsons School of Design in 1983 and a B.A. from Charter Oak State College in 2001. She previously served as the director of NorwalkSEEKS and president of the Norwalk PTO Council.


Interview with Sue Haynie


See also: Norwalk Public Schools elections (2013)


Haynie lost re-election to the board against nine other candidates for four seats on November 5, 2013. She ran on the Republican slate along with incumbent Artie Kassimis and challengers John G. Bazzano and Lauren Rosato.


Norwalk Public Schools, General Election, 4-year term, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngHeidi Keyes Incumbent 12.2% 6,985
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngArtie Kassimis Incumbent 12.1% 6,917
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngShirley Mosby 11.8% 6,734
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngSherelle Harris 11.5% 6,574
     Republican Sue Haynie Incumbent 11.4% 6,500
     Democratic Haroldo Williams 10.9% 6,234
     Republican John Bazzano 10.7% 6,130
     Republican Lauren Rosato 10.7% 6,109
     Norwalk Community Values Steve Colarossi Incumbent 3.6% 2,073
     Norwalk Community Values Andres Roman 3.1% 1,795
     Working Families Shirley Mosby 1.1% 610
     Working Families Heidi Keyes 0.9% 532
Total Votes 57,193
Source: Connecticut Secretary of State, "Municipal Elections - November 5, 2013," accessed December 17, 2013


Sue Haynie did not report any contributions or expenditures to the Connecticut State Elections Enforcement Commission.

Campaign themes


Haynie explained her top priorities in the 2013 campaign in an interview with the League of Women Voters of Norwalk:[1]

The Board of Education’s (BOE) first priority should be in supporting Superintendent Rivera’s strategic plan and vision which will be developed with the input of students, parents, staff, community stakeholders and the BOE. For years, Norwalk schools have worked under the labels of a ‘district in need of improvement’, a ‘priority district’ and an ‘alliance district’ — all code words for below-average achievement. With a plan and vision for excellence, Norwalk has a chance to break out of this cycle and become a high performing district.

A second priority of the BOE should be to review the three-year budget projection, which is nearing completion, and align that budget with the strategic plan. The alignment will tell us where we are financially, where we want to go, and where the gaps are. Having a three year budget will give us the time to figure out how we can best stay true to the strategic plan and also stay within budget — this may require finding alternate sources of funding; this may require reallocating resources; this may require doing things differently.

A third priority should be a rigorous implementation of the Common Core State Standards with a strong, embedded professional development component to ensure fidelity of implementation. We also need timely and consistent data review.

Note: The above quote is from the candidate's website, which may include some typographical or spelling errors.

What was at stake?

Four seats were at stake. Incumbents Steve Colarossi, Sue Haynie, Artie Kassimis and Heidi Keyes were on the ballot. Of the incumbents, only Democratic candidate Keyes and Republican candidate Kassimis won re-election to the board. The ballot featured a total of ten candidates, including four candidates each from the local Democratic and Republican Town Committees and a pair of candidates from the Norwalk Community Values Party. The Working Families Party endorsed Democratic candidates Heidi Keyes and Shirley Mosby for the November 5 election. Neither of the Norwalk Community Values Party candidates, Steve Colarossi nor Andres Roman, won election to the board.[2]


Tensions on the board

Sue Haynie, who did not win re-election on November 5, 2013, had been involved in several tense discussions over district policies since January 2013. She engaged in a heated debate with board member Steve Colarossi, also not re-elected on November 5, 2013, over a request to read comments into board minutes in March 2013. Haynie's request was challenged by Colarossi on the grounds that board policy treats minutes as a summary of events rather than a detailed record of each meeting. In January 2013, the Norwalk Federation of Teachers criticized Haynie as an advocate for the district's inclusion in a state teacher evaluation pilot. The criticism cited the delayed roll-out of the evaluation system as an indicator of the pilot's failings. In an interview with The Hour, Haynie noted that she asks tough questions and is willing to try new approaches to improve student achievement.[3]

About the district

See also: Norwalk Public Schools, Connecticut
Norwalk Public Schools is located in Fairfield County, Connecticut
Norwalk Public Schools is located in Fairfield County in southwestern Connecticut. The City of Norwalk is located along the Long Island Sound with the Norwalk River running past the city's downtown district. The population of Norwalk was 85,603 according to the 2010 Census.[4]


Norwalk outperforms the rest of Connecticut based on median income, poverty levels and higher education achievement. The 2010 U.S. Census found the median income in Norwalk was $76,384 while the state median income was $69,243. The city's poverty rate was 8% compared to the state's 9.5% poverty rate. The percentage of city residents over 25 years old with undergraduate degrees (40.2%) was lower than the state average (35.7%).[4]

Racial Demographics, 2010[4]
Race Norwalk (%) Connecticut (%)
White 87.7 77.6
Black or African American 14.2 10.1
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.4 0.3
Asian 4.8 3.8
Two or More Races 2.8 2.6
Hispanic or Latino 24.3 13.4

Presidential Voting Pattern[5]
Year Democratic Vote (%) Republican Vote (%)
2012 63 36
2008 65.5 33.8
2004 58.2 40
2000 59.9 35.8

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 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one or two tenths off from being exactly 100 percent.[6]

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