BY ANDREAS YILMA
NAUGATUCK — Andrew Avenue Elementary School will see a familiar face take the top administrative position at the start of the next school year.
Naugatuck Board of Education on July 13 voted to appoint Meagan Rolla as the school’s principal. Since 2020, Rolla was the director of the Early Childhood Center at Central Avenue.
Rolla said the new post is a dream come true. Rolla said her first role in borough schools was as a school counselor at Andrew Avenue Elementary School.
“To return back is something to be excited about,” Rolla said. “To collaborate with students, staff and families is something I’m looking forward to.”
The majority of Rolla’s experience has been at the elementary school leve, which provides her with a unique perspective, she said.
Rolla, who has worked in borough schools for 11 years in various roles, has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Sacred Heart University, a master’s degree in school counseling from Fairfield University and a certificate of advanced graduate study in educational leadership from the University of New England, according to the school district press release.
Superintendent of Schools Christopher Montini said school officials look forward to seeing Rolla in her new leadership role.
Montini said, “Ms. Rolla has been a valued member of the NPS leadership team for a number of years where she has built a strong sense of community and demonstrated a commitment to improving experiences for students academically, socially and emotionally.”
As a former school district lead counselor, Rolla provided comprehensive training for district staff on various topics, including how to support student’ social and emotional well-being. She also has partnerships with local agencies to support student mental health including Naugatuck Youth Services, Stokes Counseling Services and Wellmore Behavioral Health. At the Early Childhood Center, she was focused on building the foundation of learning.
In her new leadership position, Rolla has a goal to develop strong connections and have a strong school setting for everyone involved.
“Really building strong relationships with all the stakeholders in the community and creating a supportive and inclusive environment where all students can achieve their full potential,” Rolla said.
Rolla is replacing Lisa LaChance, who has taken the position of principal at City Hill Middle School. LaChance is replacing Eileen Mezzo, who is now serving as associate principal at Naugatuck High School.
Rolla was selected from a pool of 22 applicants. Nine people were interviewed during which there were several rounds of interviews that included several administrators, Andrew Avenue faculty representatives, five school board members and parent representatives, Superintendent of Schools Christopher Montini said.
The Early Childhood Center Director position has been posted and school officials hope to hire a new director at the school board’s August meeting.
“With Ms. Rolla, students are always at the center and strong relationships are at the core,” Montini said.
“We look forward to the continued success of our Andrew Avenue Community as led by Principal Meg Rolla.”