Caron tapped to replace Snyder as chairman of the Portland school board

Jaimey Caron was elected Monday as chairman of the Portland Board of Public Education by a unanimous vote, replacing Kate Snyder, who has led the board since 2010.

Caron, a civil engineer for the New Gloucester-based firm Burns & McDonnell, has served on the board and its Finance Committee for five years, and is currently chairing the district’s transition team for new Superintendent Emmanuel Caulk. He previously headed the board’s Facilities and Transportation Committee, Elementary Schools Capital Needs Task Force and Facilities Task Force.

He also previously served on the Portland Planning Board for nine years, including five as its chairman.

The experience with school facility needs and Portland’s planning department are key for the district as it moves forward with an ambitious $46 million (estimated) plan to replace the 56-year-old Fred P. Hall Elementary School and undergo extensive renovations at four other aging buildings.

Over the coming year, the school board chairman will likely be asked to sell the facilities overhaul plan to Portland voters, who will need to approve a bond to pay for the work. Caron has the background and knowledge base to lead that advocacy.

Said Caron in a Tuesday statement:

This year, the district faces major decisions about facilities, technology, academics and organization. I will work to ensure a sound process and broad engagement with our community and staff in order to make the best decisions possible for our students.

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Seth Koenig

About Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.