Principal searches in Newtown moving ahead

Searches for both a new principal at Newtown’s Hawley Elementary School and Newtown High School are underway, and school officials are optimistic about the candidate pools that have so far been attracted to the district.

The Board of Education was informed that the online advertisement to replace Hawley

Principal Jo-Ann Peters generated 50 applicants, and those were then screened down to six brought forward to a district interview committee composed of administrators, teachers, parents and school board members. Interviews will be held this week and the expectation is that three finalists will be forwarded to the new Schools Superintendent Joseph Erardi Jr. for interviews. He will then make a recommendations to the Board of Education for one or more interviews and site visit.
So far, school officials said all involved in the process are pleased with the progress.

As for the high school position to replace Charles “Chip” Dumais, who accepted a position as superintendent of the Amity School, the board opted to hire Connecticut Association of Boards of Education search consultant Jacqueline Jacoby to steer this process. Jacoby was the consultant used for the schools superintendent search.

That position is being advertised online, as well as in state and national publications, and the application deadline is today. So far, the district has received about 25 applications, and officials are pleased with the caliber of those candidates.

Again, there is a local search committee to develop questions and conduct interviews, with the first round of interviews expected to occur on April 21. Erardi will again interview all the finalists, and once he has one or more candidates to recommend he will forward those choices to the board for final interviews and site visits.


Nanci Hutson