News Feature

Deer Isle
Originally published in Island Ad-Vantages, August 3, 2017
CSD board rounds out administrative team
Head of Schools, DISES principal hired

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Head of Schools

Lynn Witham has been named Head of Schools for the Deer Isle-Stonington elementary and high schools.

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by Monique Labbe

With just a few weeks before the start of the 2017-18 school year, the administrative team has been assembled in the Deer Isle-Stonington schools.

Ed Hatch was hired in July as the Deer Isle-Stonington High School principal, and the CSD 13 board approved the hiring of a Head of Schools and a Deer Isle-Stonington Elementary School principal at its August 1 meeting.

Lynn Witham was named Head of Schools, with a two-year contracted salary of $88,000, plus benefits. Witham currently serves the district as the director of the Adult Education program, something that she has been passionate about rejuvenating over the last year. Witham will stay on in that role, but will also have help operating the day-to-day aspects of the program.

“I am looking forward to working with everybody,” said Witham, who was the only nominee at the meeting. “I am incredibly happy to be here. I care deeply about these schools, and I am excited about getting to work.”

Witham’s secondary education experience began in 1998 at The Community School on Mount Desert Island as a program director, teacher/counselor and residential coordinator. She also served as a social studies teacher and after school programs coordinator at Sumner Memorial High School from 2004-06.

Tara McKechnie was hired as the elementary school principal, with a two-year contract and salary of $82,000 a year, plus benefits. McKechnie has taught at the third grade level at Blue Hill Consolidated School for since 2006 and has over 20 years of experience in education. She holds two master’s degrees in education leadership and literacy education, and is certified in STEM education.

“We are very excited to have [McKechnie] on board,” said Union 76 Superintendent Chris Elkington. “She brings a great level of experience and I think will be a great fit for our school.”

The board also hired Jesse Gordon as a special education teacher at the high school. Gordon, who comes to the island after spending some time as a special education tech. at Bucksport High School, replaces Shel Pierce, who is leaving after one year for another teaching opportunity at Ellsworth High School. Gordon has worked in tandem with Hatch, who said she will be an “excellent” addition at the high school level.

This story was updated from the original version to correct a spelling error.