Bender is new superintendent of Shippensburg Area School District [The Sentinel, Carlisle, Pa.]
(Sentinel, The (Carlisle, PA) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Aug. 20--SHIPPENSBURG -- The resignation of Superintendent Kris Carroll was accepted Monday night by the Shippensburg Area School District board of directors.
The board also voted 9-0 to promote Assistant Superintendent Beth Bender to the top administrative post, and to hire Shippensburg native Matthew Strine as assistant superintendent.
Strine is an elementary school principal and recently appointed supervisor of curriculum in the East Pennsboro School District. He was interviewed for the position in Shippensburg during an hour-long executive session at the start of Monday's board meeting.
He submitted his resignation at East Pennsboro on Tuesday morning.
"We regretfully accept your resignation," SASD Board President Herb Cassidy told Carroll, who was hired last week as director of pupil personnel services in the Chambersburg Area School District.
Carroll has worked in the SASD for 13 years, the last four as superintendent. Those years, she told the board, have provided her "greatest memories in education."
"It's been a wonderful, wonderful experience for me," she said.
In recommending Bender for the superintendent's position, director Don Hilbinger prepared and read a statement on behalf of the board citing Bender's work ethic and five years of experience as assistant superintendent. He said, in part, that promoting Bender would be "in the best interest of students and the district as a whole.... She has been an understudy for five years. I feel she is ready to take the lead."
Bender has worked in the SASD for 23 of her 30 years in education. She started her career in 1983 as a math teacher at then Shippensburg Area Junior High School. She spent seven years as middle school principal in the Fairfield School District before returning to Shippensburg as assistant superintendent in 2009.
Bender said she was "very interested" in the superintendent's position when she learned of Carroll's resignation, and she "let the board know it would be a privilege to lead this district."
"I have a passion for education," said Bender. "This is a great opportunity."
Strine is a 1992 graduate of Shippensburg Area Senior High School and a former seventh-grade math teacher and interim principal at Shippensburg Area Middle School.
His wife, Karen, is a teacher at SAMS, and they have three children who will attend Shippensburg schools.
Strine said Tuesday morning that he is happy for the opportunity to serve in a leadership position in his children's school district.
"I have a vested interested," he said. "I'll be involved with the school district (as a parent) for the next 16 years."
He said his goal is to "keep Shippensburg moving in a positive direction -- to bring what I know how to do and keep pushing them forward."
"I want an exceptional school system for every kid in the community," he said. "I tried to set up East Pennsboro as if my own kids went here, and I will carry that same leadership to Shippensburg."
As a principal at East Pennsboro, Strine said he had high expectations and a high level of support for both students and teachers.
Bender said Strine -- who was a student in her seventh-grade pre-algebra class -- "excelled in his career at East Pennsboro and brings with him a wealth of experience."
"We're a good district," said Bender. "We need to become a great district. Matt and I both share a vision for that."
Cassidy said the appointments of Bender and Strine will allow the district to have a "seamless transition" as the new school year begins.
The transition will be complete by mid-October in accordance with Pennsylvania School Code, which allows a professional employee to be held for up to 60 days, he said.
In other business, the board approved several personnel changes. They include:
--The resignations of Ashley M. Bartosch, life skills support teacher at James Burd Elementary School; Heather A. Ceresini, music teacher at Nancy Grayson Elementary School; and Lyndsey F. Mulholland, second-grade teacher at Nancy Grayson.
--The appointments of Michael P. Boegel, learning support teacher at the intermediate school; Rebekkah M. Funk, wellness/fitness teacher at the middle school; Alexis L. King, life skills support teacher at James Burd; MaryLouise Melisauskas, second-grade teacher at Nancy Grayson; and Mary M. Oman, autistic support teacher at Nancy Grayson.
--The transfers of wellness/fitness teacher Krystal Boyles from the middle school to James Burd, and librarian Sherri Maret from James Burd to the senior high school.
--The promotion of music teacher Jennifer M. Deibler from part-time at Grace B. Luhrs University Elementary School and the senior high school to full-time at Nancy Grayson.
(c)2013 The Sentinel (Carlisle, Pa.)
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