Ward Leaving to Take Top School Job in Franklin

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Has been number two at SAU 21 for past 4 years

By Patrick Cronin

Hampton Union, Tuesday, May 18, 2010

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online]
Maureen Ward

HAMPTON -- Maureen Ward will be leaving her position as the assistant superintendent of School Administrative Unit 21 on July 1 to take over the top job at SAU 18 in Franklin.

The SAU 18 School Board announced Monday, May 17, that Ward was selected out of three finalists to become its new superintendent.

Ward has agreed to a two-year contract at a starting salary of $120,000 a year.

"I am very thrilled to be going to Franklin," Ward said. "I have been seeking a smaller district where I could immerse myself in every aspect of education. I believe that I have found that in Franklin/Hill."

Ward has served as the assistant superintendent of SAU 21 — comprised of Seabrook, North Hampton, South Hampton, Hampton Falls, Hampton and Winnacunnet Cooperative High School — for four years.

Ray Yonaitis, chairman of the SAU 18 School Board, said the three finalists went through a rigorous and lengthy selection process. In addition to an all-day/evening candidates' forum and extensive site visits, the School Board conducted finalist interviews where he said Ward emerged as the right person for the job.

Yonaitis said what added to her strength as a candidate were her experiences here, where she served, in effect, as the superintendent for three districts — Seabrook, Hampton Falls and South Hampton.

She was one of 14 applicants for the job.

Also leaving SAU 21 is current Superintendent James Gaylord, who is retiring.

The SAU 21 Joint Board recently appointed Robert Sullivan as its new superintendent.

Prior to coming to Hampton, Ward served as superintendent of Naco Elementary School District for three years, which is an Arizona school district with a 97 percent English language learner population and a 72 percent free and reduced lunch population — a financially very needy community.

Ward received her doctorate in educational leadership from Sarasota University in Florida and her master's in arts in administration and curriculum from San Diego University in California. Originally from Canada, she achieved her bachelor of education degree from the University of British Columbia.

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