Reading, MA — On behalf of the superintendent search committee, Dorothy Presser, a consultant from the Massachusetts Association of School Committees, announced the three recommended finalists for the new superintendent of schools on Thursday, January 28. The search committee received twenty-two applications for the job and chose to interview nine of the candidates. Of these, four were selected as finalists, with one dropping out due to “issues in their current community that would make it difficult to leave.” The final three candidates are Dr. Matthew Janger, Tom Milaschewski, and Dr. Stephen Zadravec.
Janger is the principal of Arlington High School and, prior to this, was the principal of Mount Desert High School in Bar Harbor, Maine. He previously had been an english teacher and principal in the Ann Arbor, Michigan Public Schools. Janger also is a former research associate at the education policy research firm Policy Studies Associates in Washington, D.C. Janger’s doctorate is in education foundations and policy from the University of Michigan. He also has a master’s degree in business administration.
Milaschewski is the superintendent resident in the Medford Public Schools and will complete his doctorate this spring. In Medford, he aided in the development of the reopening plan for the district and redesigned professional development programs for principals and assistant principals. He is also an adjunct professor at Salem State University and Endicott College and a district consultant for the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He is a former elementary school principal and high school math teacher. Milaschewski also has experience with middle school special education.
Zadravec is the superintendent of the Portsmouth, New Hampshire public schools. He serves as an adjunct professor at Southern New Hampshire University, where he received his doctorate. Before becoming superintendent, Zadravec was the assistant superintendent in Portsmouth and served as an interim high school principal. Before this, he was the Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Professional Development in the Amherst, New Hampshire public schools, having previously served as a middle school math curriculum coordinator. Zadrevec began his career as an eighth-grade math teacher.
In a letter to the community School Committee Chair Chuck Robinson stated, “The [School] Committee is excited about these candidates, and we have planned for all the stakeholders to meet the candidates and provide feedback.”
School Committee member John Parks questioned the finalists’ diversity, especially the lack of a female finalist. “The majority of educators are women,” Parks commented. Presser responded that the search committee looked carefully at what the School Committee said they were looking for in a candidate and applied those qualifications to the candidates who applied.
The School Committee introduced an aggressive potential schedule for interviews and site visits with the finalists. The plan is for Zadrevec to visit Reading virtually on February 4, Milaschewski on February 8, and Janger on February 9. Zadrevec and Milaschewski will be interviewed in a public session on February 8, with Janger’s interview in a public session on February 10. Robinson did promise to advise the community regarding forums to meet the candidates as the details are formalized. The committee expects to discuss the candidates and vote on a new superintendent in a public session on February 11.
The School Committee adjourned at 8:30 pm.