The Board of Education unanimously voted during its meeting on Tuesday, March 19, for former Newtown Superintendent of Schools John Reed to act as interim superintendent in the school district, effective immediately.
During its Tuesday, March 5, meeting the Board of Education announced it received Superintendent of Schools Janet Robinson’s letter of resignation, and by the end of that meeting, the board passed two motions to begin searching for both an interim and a permanent superintendent.
Dr Robinson’s resignation will be effective on June 28; she has accepted the position as superintendent of schools in Stratford.
After roughly 20 years as Newtown's superintendent of schools, Dr Reed retired in 2002. Since then, Dr Reed has acted as interim superintendent in other districts, most recently in Oxford. He has also been active in town. He served on the Fairfield Hills Authority until resigning, as its chairman, in January 2012.
Board of Education Vice Chair Laura Roche read from a prepared statement during the meeting, "Given the tragic events of 12/14, the Board of Education thought it was highly desirable during this important time of transition, that Newtown have an interim superintendent of schools who has a significant knowledge and understanding of our town and the Newtown school system. Such a background will help us successfully meet the challenges which confront our school system while we search for the new superintendent of schools."
Ms Roche also said Dr Reed is the longest tenured superintendent in the state, and has been volunteering since the events of 12/14 in the district.
"He knows the school intimately and has a great relationship with the staff. The move to being our interim Superintendent will be seamless," read Ms Roche.
Ms Roche also read a statement from Dr Reed at the meeting, "Like the other members of our community, I felt a need to be of help to others in the face of the tragic and traumatic events that occurred on December 14, 2012. I have now been given by the Board of Education, the opportunity to be of direct assistance to the students, staff, and parents who comprise the school system that I love. In turn, I ask for the prayers and support of my fellow Newtowners to help our school system successfully meet our present needs while optimistically preparing for the future. I will depend on Dr. Robinson for her valuable assistance so that when the time comes to assume my temporary responsibilities I will be well prepared.”
Following the meeting, First Selectman Pat Llodra said she was pleased Dr Reed was willing to come back to lead the school district.
"He is a good communicator and will play an important role in helping our town through the coming months as we continue to heal and get back on track," said Mrs Llodra. "Every day since our tragedy, he has demonstrated his loyalty to our community and our district by volunteering at the Sandy Hook,Chalk Hill School. He is the right person at the right time."