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School Board Expected to Announce New Superintendent Friday

The anticipated announcement will come with a brief reception for the public.

The Board of Education will announce the man or woman who will lead Newtown’s schools Friday, board members announced Thursday.

After a months-long search process, board officials released an invitation to a public meeting at the Newtown Municipal Center 7:30 p.m. Friday, followed by a brief reception to meet the anticipated new arrival.

Southington Superintendent Joseph Erardi is thought to be the top contender for the position. He was named the “candidate of choice” in an e-mail sent to faculty and staff in his district last Thursday. Erardi has served as Southington’s superintendent since 2007, having previously served as superintendent of Watertown and Bolton.

"There is not another job in the country that I would be interested in other than in Newtown,” Erardi said.

Board of Education officials were scheduled to conduct a site visit to Southington last Friday, according to board vice chair Laura Roche.

Current interim superintendent John Reed has served in the position since last May, when former Superintendent Janet Robinson left to helm the Stratford school district. Reed, a longtime former Newtown school superintendent, served during the successful awarding of several federal grants to the district and will present his 2014-15 proposed budget to the board Tuesday.

The district began a formal search process last summer, using focus groups, online surveys and interviews with teachers, parents and students to guide their decision. The board also held superintendent search forums in October.

A November report by CABE (the Connecticut Association for Boards of Education) showed the district needed "someone strong and dynamic, sensitive and thoughtful, and direct and honest,” according to a CABE official.

30 potential candidates applied for the position, according to CABE. 

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