Margaret DePasquale Named Principal of Next Wave and Full Circle Special Needs Schools

DePasquale has been with the Somerville schools since 2000.

It's been a big week for hiring in the Somerville Public Schools district. On Wednesday, the district announced the hiring or as headmaster of and as principal of the . Friday, the district announced it hired Margaret DePasquale as principal of the the and schools, which are alternative middle school and high schools for students with special needs.

Below is the announcement from Somerville Public Schools:


Dedicated Leader/Educator Takes on Senior Position after 12 Years at Next Wave/Full Circle

Somerville, MA – Somerville Public Schools (SPS) Superintendent, Tony Pierantozzi, announced last night that Margaret DePasquale has accepted the senior leadership role at Somerville Public Schools’ alternative middle and high schools.  Ms. DePasquale will take over as Principal of the Next Wave Middle School and Full Circle High School, succeeding Mr. David Willey who is retiring at the end of the current school year after 35 years with the schools.  Mr. Willey began his career at SPS in 1977 as a teacher at Next Wave, served as Director of Next Wave then Director of both schools, before taking on his current position as Principal of Next Wave and Full Circle in 2006.  Next Wave/Full Circle serves approximately 90 students in an alternative community that uses individualized and specialized integrated learning experiences to meet the unique academic, social, emotional and behavioral needs of its student population.

Ms. DePasquale begins her 13th year at Next Wave/Full Circle when she takes on her new leadership role.  She joined the Next Wave/Full Circle staff in 2000 and currently serves as an Administrative Leader and Teacher Counselor.  She is an active member of the school’s Long Range Planning Committee and is also a member of the School Council.  Ms. DePasquale has been a Teacher Counselor at the Schools since 2000, and brings a broad range of leadership skills and experience to the senior position at Next Wave/Full Circle.

“I am very pleased to welcome Ms. DePasquale as the new Principal of the Next Wave/Full Circle Schools,” stated Superintendent Pierantozzi.  “Margaret has demonstrated a strong commitment to alternative education in general, and to Next Wave/Full Circle specifically.  She is a dedicated educator and an experienced administrative leader with a collaborative leadership style and a demonstrated commitment to helping students successfully navigate their ways toward more successful outcomes.”

Along with serving as a Teacher Counselor and an Instructional Leader at the Next Wave/Full Circle Schools, Ms. DePasquale is also a member of the core planning team for the High School Graduation Initiative (HSGI) Grant, providing support to Somerville High School teachers and collaborating with SHS, SCALE, Somerville Evening School and the Education Development Center to plan and implement credit recovery/online learning programs.  She has also supported English language learners as a Reading Teacher in the SPELL Junior Summer Program (2001-2006), was the NW/FC Summer Program Director from 2007 to 2009, managed the Youth Employment Success Program from 2009 to 2011, and managed the Somerville Summer Credit Recovery Program.

“I am honored to be the next principal of Full Circle / Next Wave,” commented Ms. DePasquale.  “I look forward to working with an exceptional and dedicated team of teachers and counselors.  Full Circle/Next Wave is a strong program with a long history of helping students turn their lives around while meeting individual goals.  I am dedicated to working with the students, parents, and the community to continue our momentum and success as an essential component of the Somerville Public Schools.”

Ms. DePasquale began her education career and her focus on alternative programs in 1996 as an Education Coordinator at the Jesuit Volunteer Corp in Portland, Oregon. She was an Educational Assistant at the Helensview High School/Rise in Portland prior to moving to the Boston area and joining the staff at Next Wave/Full Circle.  She is a Massachusetts Licensed Administrator as a Principal/Assistant Principal and also holds a MA Professional License in Moderate Special Needs for grades 5-12.  Ms. DePasquale earned her Ed. M. in Mild-Moderate Special Needs from Boston University, and her B.A. in Speech/Language Pathology from Loyola University.

“Margaret DePasquale will be a strong and caring leader for the Next Wave/Full Circle Schools,” said School Committee Chair, Paul Bockelman.  “Ms. DePasquale knows the schools, knows the students, and knows where she wants to take the schools in the future.  She has been innovative in her programming and aggressive in obtaining grants for new programs.  I see a very good future for the two schools under her leadership.”  

The Somerville Public Schools follows a standard and inclusive recruitment and hiring process for senior school administrators to ensure broad community input.  The process begins with focus group meetings with parents/guardians, faculty members, and members of the school’s community, that provide input in the development of a candidate profile.  A separate and representative Screening Committee and an Interview Panel are established for each position to determine the pool of applicants who best match the School and District’s needs.  A slate of final candidates is forwarded to the Superintendent of Schools, who makes the final hiring decision based on the Interview Panel’s recommendations and a comprehensive personal interview process.


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