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Winter Hill Community School Gets New Assistant Principal

Ian Charles, who previously served as interim assistant principal at the Healey School, will replace Pat O'Connor as assistant principal of the Winter Hill Community School. O'Connor retired after 40 years with the school.

The , which recently became an  a designation that allows administrators and school leaders more flexibility in terms of setting school policy and the curriculum, is getting a new assistant principal.

Chad Mazza, who was , has selected Ian Charles, who comes from the , for the role, according to an announcement from

Charles replaces Pat O’Connor, who retired after 40 years with the school.

Here's the announcement:

Ian Charles Takes on Assistant Principal Position at Winter Hill School 

Charles joins new Principal Chad Mazza as Schools’ Top Administrators

Somerville, MA – New Winter Hill Community School Principal, Chad Mazza, announced the selection of Ian Charles as the school’s new Assistant Principal. Charles began his position at the Somerville Public Schools’ first Innovation School on July 1, 2012, replacing Pat O’Connor who retired from her position after 40 years at the school.  Mr. Charles joins the Winter Hill staff after serving a year as Interim Assistant Principal for Somerville’s Arthur D. Healey School in 2011-12.  He earned a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell College of Social Sciences, and also holds a M. Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the UMass Lowell College of Education as well as a C.A.G.S./Ed. S. in Educational Leadership and Policy from the Cambridge College Graduate School of Education.  Mr. Charles is currently an Ed. D. Candidate in Educational Leadership at Northeastern University’s College of Professional Studies.  He holds Massachusetts Professional Certification in Political Science Political Thought (grades 5-12) and a School Professional Administrator Certification in Prek-5, 6-8, and 9-12.

“I am extremely excited about Mr. Charles joining the Winter Hill Community School family. His strong communication and collaboration skills will positively impact students, families and staff of the Winter Hill,” said Principal Mazza.  “I look forward to beginning our work together as we prepare the foundation of the Innovative framework for the Winter Hill Community School.”

Mr. Charles brings three years of educational administrative experience, and more than 10 years of teaching experience to his new position. As Interim Assistant Principal at the Healey School, Mr. Charles helped oversee the daily operations of the K-8 school serving more than 525 students.  He co-facilitated a professional development program for the school’s teaching staff and managed student support efforts including student support meetings and the Student Transitional Aide Team (STAT). Staff supervision, budgeting, school-community relations, discipline and scheduling were among Mr. Charles’ responsibilities at the Healey.  

Prior to joining the Somerville Public Schools last year, Mr. Charles was an Administrative Intern at the Cambridge Public Schools where he served as a mentor and leader for faculty and staff.  He introduced the effective use of data, educational technology programs and cooperative processes to drive whole school change and promote instructional transparency and accountability.  Mr. Charles began his teaching career at the Lowell Public Schools in 1998 as a Special Education/Social Studies Instructor.  He taught high school Civics and was an Adjunct Faculty member at Valencia Community College in Florida where he taught Political Science/History & Economics for 5 years prior to returning to Massachusetts.

“I am honored to have been given the opportunity to continue to serve the community of Somerville. It is with great pleasure that I assume the position of Assistant Principal of the Winter Hill Community School,” stated Mr. Charles. “This is an exciting time for the parents, students and faculty of the Winter Hill Community School as we continue to strive toward greater academic and social achievement. The new innovation model helped to solidify my interest in becoming a valued member of the school community. I look forward to working with the new leadership team during the inaugural year of the Innovation plan.”

“Mr. Charles emerged from an excellent pool of both internal and external candidates. He is an experienced, dedicated educator with excellent communication skills,” added Superintendent Tony Pierantozzi.  “He joins Mr. Chad Mazza as a new leadership team at WHCS. Mr. Charles brings an extensive educational background, experience in diverse schools, and excellent skills in building relationships with students, staff and parents/guardians. I am pleased that he will continue to be a member of the Somerville Public Schools staff.”

The Somerville Public Schools follows a standard and inclusive recruitment and hiring process for school administrators to ensure community input.  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’s needs.  A slate of final candidates is forwarded to the School Principal, who makes the final hiring decision based on the Interview Panel’s recommendations and a comprehensive personal interview process.

Frank Mulligan July 17, 2012 at 04:45 PM
Somerville hae really changed since, I live in it. That's a very long time. It still needs change's , Like any other city and town. No city or town is any better. They all have their crime's Good Luck Somerville.

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