REGION 16 — The new assistant principal for Algonquin and Community schools in Prospect is ready to get to work.
Jeffrey Haddad, 36, of Southbury, has been hired by the Region 16 Board of Education, which oversees schools in Beacon Falls and Prospect, as the assistant principal for the two schools.
“I’m thrilled to be going to Region 16,” Haddad said.
Haddad has been working in Region 15, which oversees schools in Middlebury and Southbury, since 1999 and currently serves as a scientific research-based interventionist at Memorial Middle School in Middlebury.
The Region 16 school board approved the hire of Haddad during a special meeting Oct. 15, Superintendent of Schools Tim James said. Haddad was chosen from 66 applicants for the position, James said, and will start his new position on Nov. 12. Haddad’s salary will be $104,501, which will be prorated this year since he’s starting after the beginning of the school year, according to James.
Haddad will replace Community School Principal Joseph Nuzzo, who retired Oct. 31. James said Nuzzo has agreed to stay on until Haddad is in place.
The hire of Haddad symbolizes a bit of a shakeup in the makeup of the administration of the two schools. Community and Algonquin schools will be closed once the new Prospect Elementary School opens in 2015, and all the students will attend the new school. Rima McGeehan, who is currently principal of Algonquin School, is now principal of both Community and Algonquin schools with Haddad as her assistant principal. Once the new school opens McGeehan and Haddad will lead the school in the same positions.
James said each administrator will spend time in both schools to create cohesion among the staff and students prior to the new school opening. James added there will be an administrator in each school every day.
Haddad graduated cum laude from Mount Saint Mary’s University and earned a bachelors degree in elementary education. He earned a masters degree in school counseling from Western Connecticut State University and a degree in administration and supervision from Sacred Heart University.
Haddad’s experience includes working as a fifth-grade teacher at Pomperaug Elementary School in Southbury from 1999 to 2007, a district-wide elementary math coach from 2007 to 2010 and as a district-wide instructional coach from January 2011 to June 2011.
“I am pleased that someone of his professional caliber will be an educational leader in Region 16,” James said in a press release issued last week announcing the hire.
Haddad said he was influenced by his father, who was an educator at Abott Technical High School in Danbury for 36 years, to pursue a career in education himself. Haddad said his father never pushed him to go into teaching. However, he said, seeing the work his father did with children and the relationships he built with his students naturally lead him down to path to become an educator.
Haddad described his emotions as bittersweet when he was told he was chosen as the new assistant principal. Haddad said he’s saddened to be leaving Region 15 where he’s spent his entire career and developed many friendships. He’s also excited about coming to Region 16 and is looking forward to working with everyone in the district to ensure the right things are being done for the students.
“The Region 16 community has a good reputation in terms of being student-centered, and I like the feeling of the community,” he said.