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Superintendent of Schools Dr. Ruth Levy has announced the appointment of a new director of pupil services for the Chester, Deep River, Essex, and Region 4 schools. She is Sarah Smalley and she replaces Tracy Johnston, the present director.
Smalley is not a stranger to the district. She previously served as a special educator, department coordinator, and as interim associate principal at Valley Regional High School from 2003 through 2011. She has also served as director of pupil services in New Hartford, a pre-kindergarten through grade 6 school district. Levy said Smalley continued her administrative experience as the supervisor of pupil services in Region 17, which serves Haddam-Killingworth, for the past two years.
Smalley attended George Washington University, from which she earned both her undergraduate degree and master's degree. She received her sixth-year degree in educational leadership from Sacred Heart University.
In making the announcement of the appointment, Levy said, "Sarah Smalley comes to us from a family of educators, and serves her community as a member of the Region 18, Lyme-Old Lyme Board of Education. We are pleased to welcome her back home to our communities in her new position as director of pupil services. She will begin her post on July 1. Her salary will be $128,512.
Johnston has worked in the district for the past five years in her role as director of pupil services. "During that time, she has established numerous valuable programs within our district, buddy ball programs, and many, many wonderful relationships with families, students, and staff members," Levy said.
The director of pupil services oversees programs in special education and related services. Throughout the recent public hearings on school budgets Levy has said the work in this area has grown and the district is succeeding in developing programs that keep special needs students in-house rather than sending them out of the district. In-house programs succeed for both the students and the district, she said. Last year the district hired a supervisor of pupil services. He is Tyson Stoddard.