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New London — City native Richard P. Foye, who on Friday was named acting superintendent, said he is “delighted to serve the students and school system of my hometown.”
Foye, 61, who was passed over a decade ago to serve as superintendent of the city’s schools, said he was partially inspired by the Charles W. Morgan to come out of retirement and set sail once again.
“The Morgan just completed a successful voyage, an old ‘whaler’ and one last voyage,” Foye wrote Friday in an email to the district staff. “My thoughts, I am an old ‘Whaler’ from the class of 1970, perhaps a successful voyage as captain of the NLPS is in order.”
Foye, who will move into the superintendent’s office on Monday, will lead the school system while the Board of Education and state education officials await the results of an investigation into the background and academic record of Terrence P. Carter, whom the board unanimously chose as its next superintendent in June.
Before the board ratified Carter’s contract, news reports revealed similarities between his job application and writings previously published by others, and that he may have been misrepresenting himself as having a Ph.D. for more than five years before he completed his doctoral studies. The board’s investigation is expected to be complete in about three weeks.
Foye was named acting superintendent by state-appointed Special Master Steven J. Adamowski, but the Board of Education will have to vote to make Foye the interim superintendent and set his salary, Adamowski said.
The board will conduct a special meeting Wednesday to appoint Foye as the city’s interim superintendent until Oct. 31.
Though Adamowski does not have the power to select or appoint a permanent superintendent, he said the law allows him to “assign staff.”
“I’ve interpreted my ability to assign staff as the basis for being able to assist the board until they could meet to approve the person,” he said Friday.
During an executive session last week, the board “asked my help specifically to see if we could enlist Rich Foye in doing this work,” Adamowski said.
The board’s request came during an executive session during which the board was supposed to only discuss “Consideration of the appointment and contract terms for Terrence Carter as Superintendent of Schools,” as the board’s agenda stated.
“Agenda specificity for executive session is really critical,” FOI Public Education Officer Tom Hennick said. “In my opinion only, it seems to me that they strayed from what they said they were going in (executive session) for.”
Adamowski said the board made its request to him without taking a vote during the executive session.
Foye has served as interim superintendent in New London once before, after controversial Superintendent Julian Stafford abruptly departed in 2003. Foye was a candidate for the permanent job, but in January 2004 the Board of Education offered the job to Christopher Clouet, who was superintendent of the Thomaston school district at the time.
Shortly after, Foye, who worked as a longtime principal and administrator in New London, left the district for the job of headmaster/superintendent at Woodstock Academy. He held that post until he retired in 2009.
Day staff writer Ann Baldelli contributed to this report.