Newtown may be close to its final selection for a new school superintendent. Five members of Newtown’s Board of Education plan to head to Southington January 10 to conduct a site visit with that district’s Superintendent Dr. Joseph V Erardi, Jr, who is a candidate for the top spot locally.
School Board Vice Chair Laura Roche told The Newtown Bee Wednesday that no formal job offer has been made to any superintendent candidate yet, and when the board holds a vote to recommend a new superintendent it will be done in a public meeting.
“We have to protect the confidentiality of the process,” Ms Roche said. “I am aware that information has been put out, and our site visit to Southington Friday is part of the interview process.”
Ms Roche said it was outside the purview of the Newtown Board to request or restrict any type of communication between Dr Erardi and his district personnel. According to a copy of an email the Southington schools chief sent to his staff, he was informed by Newtown that he is a “candidate of choice” for the Newtown post and that he is sharing the “bittersweet” news with his staff.
Dr Erardi’s email states that, “There is not another job in the country that I would be interested in other than in Newtown. Over time, as a school leader, you realize what you do well. I looked at what I believe were positive professional attributes within my personal skill set and became a part of their search process.”
A biographical website established by Dr. Erardi indicates he began his education career in 1977 as an educator and administrator in Manchester, and became the Principal of Killingly High School in 1994.
In 1998 Dr Erardi transitioned to become Principal of Rockville High School and accepted a position as Superintendent in Bolton in 2001.
In 2005, he took over the superintendent post in Watertown, and moved to the top schools post in Southington in 2007.
Dr. Erardi was recognized as a National Teacher of the Year honoree in 1992 by the Disney Corp, and also served on the selection committee for Disney’s National Teacher of the Year.
He continues to serve in a number of voluntary positions including Chair of the Federal Relations Committee - Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (2010-present); the National Governance Board for the American Association of School Administrators (2010 – present); on the Board of Directors, CT Education Foundation (2002 – present); and was among selected superintendents serving on the Connecticut Center for School Change (2005-present).
The district has been engaged in a nationwide superintendent search since the departure of Dr. janet Robinson who accepted the Superintendent Position in Stratford in the fall of 2012. Former Newtown Superintendent Dr. John Reed has been serving as interim since Dr. Robinson’s departure in June 2013.