CAVENDISH, Vt. – For the second time this spring, Cavendish community members gathered at Cavendish Town Elementary School Monday, June 11 to meet two final candidates being considered for the open CTES principal position being vacated by retiring Principal George Thomson.
Candidates Debra Beaupre of Meriden, N.H. and Adam Rosen of Montpelier were placed in separate rooms in the school. Community members were split into two groups as they listened to an introduction and then participated in a 25-minute question and answer session with each candidate. They then switched rooms to repeat the process. Participants were asked to fill out evaluation forms after each session, which will be shared with the Green Mountain Unified School District school board. The GMUSD board interviewed both candidates Tuesday, June 12.
Debra Beaupre is the current assistant principal at Newport City Elementary School in Newport, Vt. Previously, Beaupre taught for many years in grades 3 – 6 and worked as a Title 1 reader teacher for grades 1 – 6. When asked about her leadership style, Beaupre said she uses a servant leadership model. Servant leadership is a philosophy that puts the needs of others first and helps others develop to their highest potential. In talking about the addition of Spanish being added to the elementary school, Beaupre was enthusiastic, mentioning that the beauty of children learning a second language was that “we can give them a larger vision of themselves.” When asked what she would change, Beaupre said that she was “all about continuing what is making CTES work.”
Adam Rosen is currently working as an early educator at the Waterbury Children’s Early Learning Space, but he was a former principal of the Rumney Memorial School in Middlesex, Vt., for many years. When asked why he left the principal position at his former school, Rosen indicated there had been a lack of resources and superintendent involvement, something that was not a concern at CTES. Rosen went on to say that he believes in a multi-tiered system of support, something he sees at CTES. “What I see is a great sense of support in their [students] learning and their behavior.” Although Rosen embraces technology, he stressed the importance of balancing that with natural surroundings. “There needs to be device-free time,” he said. When asked about his leadership style, Rosen said he was a collaborative leader, working with others toward common goals.
Beaupre and Rosen were selected from an original pool of 17 candidates who applied for the principal’s position with 13 having the qualifications needed for the job. The Search Committee vetted those 13 candidates and selected three candidates to interview. Following the second round of interviews, Beaupre and Rosen were invited for a school visit. On Wednesday, June 6, they met extensively with students, faculty, and staff at CTES.
The search for a CTES principal has endured its ups and downs. Initially, TRSU Superintendent Meg Powden listed the position as an interim post, leaving CTES parents and staffers frustrated with the quality of candidates that had applied in the first round. Over the course of a long process by the search committee, only one candidate, Madeline Carlock, was still in the running, but she ultimately declined the position, citing lack of public support.
Cavendish residents quickly seized the opportunity and circulated a petition, which was signed by over 400 people, requesting that the position be restored to a “full-time, permanent” position for the second round of the principal search. The petition was brought before the GMUSD board during their April 30 meeting, and they agreed to make the change. Superintendent Meg Powden limited the position to a one-year contract however.
The GMUSD Board of Directors will have made their decision on the CTES principal during the June 12 meeting at CTES.