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SAU 58 unveils big changes for the future

by Tara Giles
Sports reporter - Coos County Democrat and Berlin Reporter

May 20, 2020
GROVETON — After just about one year on the job, SAU 58 Superintendent Ronna Cadarette has unveiled some big changes for the school district moving forward. With a new energy and a focus to bring SAU 58 schools closer together, Cadarette has much to report.

The first change that has now been made permanent was the hiring of well known faculty member for the SAU, Erin Messer. Messer took over for former Groveton High School Principal Lisa Perras in December. Prior to taking the helm at GHS, Messer was the Teaching Principal at the Stark Village School. Before coming on board in Stark, Messer was a Special Educator and Case Manager for the Stratford School.

Caderette explains that Messer was the perfect person to fit the missing piece at GHS, "Because Erin has been in the district so long, she already knew so many kids. What's great is that those kids who eventually transfer into GHS will now see a familiar face."

Messer also came on board already knowing the majority of the faculty, making for a smooth transition.

"We didn't expect to lose a Principal so unexpectedly in December, which is one reason we looked at Erin. She brought with her some stability," Cadarette said. "She's done a great job and I can't imagine if we had to bring in someone brand new with all of the other challenges happening right now."

Josh Smith, who is now Assistant Principal at GHS will move into the Principal role at the Groveton Elementary School. Smith is another member of the faculty who is a familiar face as he has taught at the middle school level in town.

A pilot program at the Stark School will be run by Teacher Leader Kelly Jewell, which will unfold this fall. Sam Natti, a former Special Education teacher, left the district at one point for Littleton but has since found his way back. He will serve as Assistant Principal for GHS.

Caderette said, "This speaks to the strong foundation we are building to create a legacy of people moving through our system to leadership positions, people who want to come back and move up the ladder."

She added, "My desire is to attract and retain the most qualified staff we can."

Michael Dewitt will take over the Teaching Principal role at Stratford. Dewitt was the former Assistant Teaching Principal at Pittsburg. The role at Stratford will be new this coming year.

Caderette said all decisions have been made with the budget in mind, "We are working with the School Board and staying within our budget. We appreciate all of the towns and what they do to keep our schools open with what we have for an economy, while still bringing forth the best programming we can."

She went on to say, "When we hire new staff, we look at what skills they have and how they will fit into our programing needs, then hire based on that."

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