May, 25, 2017
A MESSAGE TO OUR STAFF, PARENTS, STUDENTS, AND THE WINCHESTER COMMUNITY
It is with pleasure that we announce the selection of Melony Brady-Shanley as the next Winchester Superintendent of Schools. Ms.Shanley comes to us from an impressive career beginning as an elementary teacher and later as a teacher of adults, in a number of capacities, including as a Professor of Practice in Educational Leadership at the University of Connecticut.
She served with distinction in the urban public schools of Hartford beginning as the Dean of a Magnet High School, promptly promoted to Principal of a K-8 STEM School, which was recognized as both a Blue Ribbon School of Distinction and also a Magnet School of Excellence. This was followed by her choosing to lead a traditional High School Academy for Nursing and Health Services. In all of these positions she was highly regarded by staff and parents for the masterful way she engaged, collaborated and partnered with all stakeholders while raising academic expectations and student achievement. Ms.Brady-Shanley is currently the Assistant Chief Talent Officer in a Central Office position in the District of New Britain.
Her breadth of experience brings enormous strengths to Winchester and we are excited to work together with her over the coming years to move our District forward in the service of the Winchester community and of our students
The selection of the Superintendent of Schools is perhaps the single most important decision that a school community makes. We are extremely appreciative of the more than 150 teachers, administrators, school staff, parents, and other community members who have contributed to this process over the past two months through surveys and focus groups, and who have provided their perspectives in helping define the essential qualities of our next Superintendent.
The search began with recruiting and resulted in fifteen inquiries and eleven candidates who submitted applications for the Winchester Superintendent position. A representative Superintendent Search Committee was selected and they began their work by carefully reviewing the applications and developing a series of comprehensive questions for candidate interviews. Four candidates were selected to be interviewed; they constituted an impressive group of dedicated educators. After several rounds of interviews with this group, a review of a writing sample from each candidate and a presentation of strategic planning around three immediate priorities for Winchester, the Search Committee quickly came to unanimously feel that Ms. Brady-Shanley was a uniquely good match for our District and our town.
The Search Committee members were struck by her energy, infectious optimism, deep knowledge of curriculum and policy, breadth of experience at all levels, and her impressive history of leadership. After reaching consensus, the Search Committee simultaneously began an extensive reference and background check and conducted a site visit to her current district. It was affirming to hear that she shared creative and distinctive ideas about how best to educate children, work with staff, engage with parents and the community, and inspire teachers and leaders. One reference, a superintendent said, “She leads with urgency”…she will make you proud.” A former colleague and later supervisor said “.She lives at the speed of light but understands that change happens at the speed of trust”. We couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome, of our search and we thank everyone for their support. An added bonus is that Ms. Brady-Shanley resides in nearby Hartland, CT with her family.
We are particularly grateful to the Winchester Superintendent Search Committee members who assisted through this lengthy process for they generously gave of their time, energy and thoughtful participation. The Search Committee included: Board of Education members, Mr. Doug Pfenninger, Ms. Nora Mocarski, Mrs. Michelle Hintz, Ms. Liz O’Dowd; Winchester Education Association Teacher Representative, Mrs. Cynthia Boyle; Winchester Principal Representative, Ms. Debra Grainsky; Parent Representatives, Mrs. Sarah Guenther, Mrs., Rachel Welcome; Community Representatives, Dr. Michael Rook, President of NWCC, Mr. Robert Passini, Resident, TGS parent, Dr. Richard Dutton, Resident; former BOE member and CT State Department Representative, Dr. Ellen Stoltz, Project Manager and me. Special thanks to Dr. Jacqueline Jacoby, CABE Senior Search Consultant for effectively facilitating the search process.
Please join us in welcoming Ms. Melony Brady-Shanley as the new Superintendent of Schools for Winchester
Mr. Freeman Burr, Receiver, CT State Dept. Representative