Girard at Large has received information about Dr. Maureen Ward that causes us to question whether or not she is the right person to be Manchester’s Superintendent of Schools.In May of 2010, SAU 21 announced that Ward was leaving her post as an assistant superintendent to take the help at SAU 18, her current position. Among the reasons sited from her leaving a district with roughly 5,200 students to take the top job at a district with approximately 1,500 students was to “immerse” herself “in every aspect of education.” The article forwarded to us can be read here.
Of course, Girard at Large cannot know whether or not she remains desirous of being involved in “every aspect of education.” That said, we question, whether or not someone coming from a district that’s about the same number of students as West High School will be able to perform in a district that’s literally ten times the size of what she’s handled since 2010. We hope the school board will dig deep on that one in determining whether or not she deserves the nod.
A charitable interpretation of the school board’s decision to require any candidate applying for the job have experience in a district of at least 5,000 students does apply here. After all, she was an assistant superintendent in a district that beat that benchmark by a couple hundred kids. That said, it is noteworthy that she desired to be in a smaller district. Now, she wants to lead the largest in the state.
The school board needs to find out why.
We have also received information from another listener regarding Dr. Ward’s tenure in Franklin. While we believe that any superintendent, not matter how good, will have their critics, we are concerned with information we consider credible stating that withing six months of taking the job, she was looking for another position. Hopefully, the school board will find out if this is true and why, if so.
We’ve posted Dr. Cash’s Bio here for your convenience.