The Amity Regional School District will have a new leadership profile with the hiring of an assistant superintendent. The Board of Education voted unanimously on May 9 to hire Frank A. Purcaro to fill the new role at a salary of $186,668.
The District, under the leadership of School Supt. Dr. Jennifer Byars, decided earlier this spring not to continue the position of Director of Curriculum and Staff Development after Dr. Marie McPadden retired. Instead, the new assistant superintendent will assume more responsibilities, including responsibilities for instruction and assessment, English Language Learners, school safety and “aspects of HR,” Dr. Byars wrote in an email.
The assistant superintendent will be more involved in interactions with the Board of Education, through both its Curriculum Committee and the Policy Committee. The new position also “creates a clear chain of command,” Dr. Byars wrote, “particularly if the superintendent is not available.”
She pointed out that comparable districts in the District Reference Group (DRG) all have this leadership structure, with a superintendent and assistant superintendent, rather than a curriculum coordinator. The salary is in line with that of the high school principal, Dr. Byars said.
Frank Purcaro comes to Amity from his current position as director of Student Learning and Teaching at Newtown schools. He earned his Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Bridgeport and also holds his Juris Doctorate from the University of Connecticut School of Law.
Purcaro has “extensive experience in all facets of school system management, with a substantial focus in the area of classroom teaching, professional development, and student learning,” according to a press release sent out by the Amity District.
He began his career in education as a high school social studies teacher before becoming assistant principal and eventually, assistant superintendent in the Wolcott School District before moving to Newtown schools. Purcaro will join the Amity District on July 1.
By Bettina Thiel – Woodbridge Town News Correspondent