School board names new superintendent

Editor’s note: the Bridge intentionally “skipped” a week knowing that the big “breaking news” for Winooski was set for this week – the selection of a new superintendent of schools. Longtime community newspaper reporter Gail Callahan makes her Bridge debut below. The next issue will be published as scheduled Thursday, April 18.

By Gail Callahan

The Winooski School Board named Sean McMannon Wednesday evening as the District's new superintendent.

The vote to confirm McMannon was 4-1, with School Trustee Amy Booher dissenting. She didn't publically state her objections.

The Board voted to offer McMannon the position after discussing the matter in Executive, or private session. The panel then moved out of private deliberations, resumed the public portion of the hearing and voted on McMannon. He succeeds Mary Lundeen, who is leaving after 3 1/2 years in the post. Lundeen, a Jericho resident, started as a teacher in the Winooski School District about 16 years ago and then worked there as a special educator. To date, she has no firm professional plans after she leaves the superintendent's office.

School Board Chairman Michael DeCarreau planned on calling McMannon early on the morning of April 11, offering him the position. If McMannon accepted the post, a round of salary negotiations was set to kick-off.

The announced salary is expected to fall between $115,000 to $120,000, DeCarreau said, noting McMannon's contrct would start July 1. He also praised McMannon's "positive vision and affective leadership." Currently, McMannon served as principal at Champlain Valley Union High School in Hinesburg since 2005. He didn't attend Wednesday evening's Winooski School Board meeting because he was in attendance at a CVU hearing. Many schools in the Chittenden South Supervisory Union District-the largest SU in Vermont-meet on the second Wednesday of the month.

Last Thursday, McMannon spent the day meeting with school officials and the community. The other finalist for the superintendent position, Yutaka Tamura, of Excel Academy in Boston, decided to drop out of the race.
Community dinner April 17
Kate Nugent of Coalition for a Safe and Peaceful Community reports: The Lead Program will be hosting a community dinner Wednesday, April 17, starting at 5:30 PM. They will be providing valuable information about how you can qualify for free home improvements (either as a tenant or property owner). Please come by to enjoy a meal with your friends and neighbors and learn more about this great service. Check out our website for more information: http://wcspc.blogspot.com/p/programs.html
The other great event is with our friends CORN, who are experts at putting together productive discussions on difficult subjects. They are hosting a panel discussion called "Voices of Parents" on April 25. Find out more on the flyer: http://goo.gl/K37wi.