By Andreas Yilma Citizen’s News
NAUGATUCK — Maple Hill Elementary School will have new leadership for the upcoming school year.
The Board of Education unanimously approved to hire Lisa Romano of Watertown as the school’s newest principal. The current principal Cheryl Kane, who has led the school for 8 years, will remain at the school until Romano takes over. Kane will then continue to work for the school board until she retires in January.
Romano started her education career as a fourth-grade teacher at Rotella Interdistrict Magnet School in Waterbury where she was a 2020 Connecticut Teacher of the Year semifinalist. She has also recently worked as Academic Academy Supervisor for an accelerated school within Wallace Middle School in Waterbury.
Romano was very thankful for the opportunity at the school board’s special July 14 meeting.
“It’s a true honor to be able to serve the Naugatuck community, our teachers, our support staff, our parents but most importantly our students,” Romano said. “Our students are the reason why I do the work that I do and I cannot wait to meet them, each and every single one of them and get to know them.”
Romano said from an external perspective, the school district looked like a place where teachers loved to teach and children loved to be there and she felt this was the place that she needed to be.
Romano said during the interview process, she got to know more stakeholders and realized her core values as an educator aligned with those of the borough school system such as high expectations, equity and inclusion diversity and high achievement for all.
“Those are all things at the core but the biggest one would certainly be relationships. Relationships with all stakeholders in the community, teachers, parents, students, that’s the pathway forward and there’s no goal too big, no dream too lofty,” Romano said. “The sky is the limit for Maple Hill.
Romano has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and master’s degree in elementary education. She later obtained her sixth year certificate in educational leadership from University of Bridgeport and is an executive development program graduate from the National Institute of School Leadership.
Romano is working toward her doctorate of education degree from the University of Bridgeport, which she expects to finish this December.
“The Naugatuck Public Schools team is incredibly excited to welcome Ms. Romano as the next principal of Maple Hill School. Ms. Romano’s student centered approach and passion for building cultures of positivity and growth will serve the Maple Hill Community well,” Superintendent of Schools Christopher Montini said.