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School Board Honors Retiring Educators



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Superintendent of Schools Joseph V. Erardi, Jr, noted at the Board of Education’s meeting on Tuesday, June 2, that the educators who will be retiring at the end of this school year have spent a total of 354 years working in the district.

Recognizing and celebrating the “careers of master teachers,” Dr Erardi said, is one of his favorite things to do as a superintendent.

“And this evening… I think we will all be in agreement that 354 years of service that will be standing in front of you at some point, is simply amazing,” said Dr Erardi.

The retiring educators were honored individually. Each was called forward by name to shake hands with Board of Education Chair Keith Alexander, school board Vice Chair Laura Roche, and Newtown Federation of Teachers President Tom Kuroski. Presents were also given to the educators before they stood together behind Dr Erardi.

“Behind me is one heck of a chorus line,” Dr Erardi said.

The service completed by all of the teachers to the community of Newtown, Dr Erardi said, “is irreplaceable.”

“That’s the history and those are our master teachers that are leaving on the top of their game,” the superintendent said. “I know that I speak for the entire Board of Education and the leadership team, from your building principals, and your colleagues that are here in the audience, congratulations, best of luck, and stay healthy to all.”

Retiring educators honored during the event were Newtown High School Assistant Principal Kathy Boettner, Newtown Middle School math coordinator Jeanne Cavallaro, NHS World Language Department Chair Paula Greenfield, Sandy Hook School art teacher Leslie Gunn, Reed Intermediate School teacher Gael Lynch, NMS school counselor Kate MacKinney, Head O’ Meadow math/science specialist Gail Maletz, Reed teacher Lil Martenson, Reed teacher Valerie Pagano-Hepburn, district speech/hearing specialist Judy Silverlight, Reed teacher Georgia Smith, NMS art teacher Arlene Spoonfeather, and NHS special education teacher Linda Sykes.

Retiring educators from right are Kathy Boettner, Paula Greenfield, Gael Lynch, Kate MacKinney, Gail Maletz, Lil Martenson, Valerie Pagano-Hepburn, Judy Silverlight, Georgia Smith, Arlene Spoonfeather, and Linda Sykes. Jeanne Cavallaro was not present for the event, but is also retiring at the end of the school year.
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