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STRENGTH FROM WITHIN: Familiar faces fill transitional leadership roles in curriculum and instruction

With the retirement of Dr. Kay Dugan as Assistant Superintendent for Learning, the District’s transitional leadership roles in curriculum and instruction are continuing to evolve. 

We are happy to announce that Anne Paonessa, who served last year as Blackhawk Middle School Co-Principal, will now serve as Interim Director of Teaching and Learning. She will lead our Interim Co-Coordinators of Curriculum: Dr. Amy Stewart, an Instructional Coordinator, is also serving as Interim Co-Coordinator of Curriculum for Grades Pre-K-3, and Nicole Mrowice, Blackhawk Middle School Assistant Principal, is also serving as Interim Co-Coordinator of Curriculum for Grades 4-8.

Their tasks for the coming year include the following:

  • Coordinating Teacher Institute and New Teacher Days
  • Updating Induction and Mentor Handbook
  • Updating Curriculum Guide
  • Partnering with administrators to develop continuous improvement plans
  • Continuously reviewing student achievement data
  • Partnering with grant management team to ensure effective allocation of funds
  • Reviewing/approving curriculum purchase requests
  • Coordinating Pre-k-8 curriculum and assessment alignment including transition between key grades
  • Maintaining state curriculum mandates
  • Researching and facilitating best practice professional development
  • Coordinating student teaching programs with partner universities 
  • Participating in Community of Practice administrator meetings as warranted 

With Ms. Paonessa taking on this new role, the co-principal model will not continue at Blackhawk. Instead, Dr. Perry Finch will serve as BMS Principal and oversee two Assistant Principals: Nicole Mrowice and Zach Ettelbrick. 

In addition to this staffing change, Linda Szwaknowski will now serve in the District’s new Grant Reporting Manager role. Her previous position of Administrative Assistant for the Assistant Superintendent for Learning will change to Clerical Aide for Curriculum and Instruction, and will be filled by Chloe Johnson. 

As the Grant Reporting Manager, Mrs. Szwankowski will be responsible for grant reporting activities for most federal and state grants covering two main topics: financial reporting to show spending matches the approved budgets, and performance reporting to show that grant outcomes match the desired objectives. 

Mrs. Szwankowski will still work closely with Dr. Dugan, who will continue to serve the District on a part-time basis for the 2021-2022 school year as a grant consultant.