CLARKS SUMMIT — Members of the Abington Heights School Board voted, 7-0, to approve the resignation of high school principal Pamela Murray, effective June 2016, during its regular meeting Wednesday, Jan. 20.
Murray, who has served as principal for the last 1o years, and her family will be relocating to the greater New York City area as her husband, Kevin, pursues a job opportunity with The Williams Companies, Inc.
“He has always supported my educational endeavors, whether it was teaching, coaching or serving as an administrator,” she said. “He has the opportunity to advance his career and I need to return that favor in supporting him. Although we considered all the options, it’s a little too far to commute.”
Murray reflected fondly on her tenure and believes the district should flourish in the coming years.
“I will leave with much sadness, but I’m thankful for the opportunity to serve the district,” she said. “I’ve enjoyed working with the administrative team under the board’s leadership with an aim toward continual improvement. (The district) is in a good position and is going to be in good hands.”
According to Murray, the opportunity to impact the success and well-being of each student was one of the most rewarding aspects of her time as principal.
“There have been a lot of challenges along the way, but many more rewards that have come along with serving in this capacity,” she said.
The district has already begun the process of finding a replacement, according to Abington Heights Superintendent of Schools Michael Mahon.
“We have posted and advertised the position,” he said. “My guess is we will be looking both internally and externally to find the best possible candidate to take over for Mrs. Murray, who truly has done extraordinary work during her time in the school district.”
In other news, the board…
• Appointed Gregory Madensky as treasurer of the Abington Heights School District. Louise Brzuchalski, who previously served in that role, assumed the position of vice president, during a meeting last month.
• Approved the Act 1 index resolution for the 2016-17 fiscal year. By passing the resolution, the board can’t raise taxes above the current index of 2.4 percent.
• Approved an agreement for engineering services between the Abington Heights School District and BDA Associates, a Clarks Summit firm, for renovations to the high school pool. During a work session meeting last November, Mahon stated the Dry-O-Tron, a mechanical dehumidification system used to control humidity and air temperature, would likely need to be replaced among other work.
“We anticipate the project will be completed by the end of the summer or early fall of the 2016-17 school year,” Mahon said.
• Approved leavesx of abesence for teachers Lara Beth Lunger, effective through June 2016, and Beth Kelly, Amanda Kistler, and Jacquelyn Gaidula, effective for the second semester of the 2015-16 school year, along with school psychologist Sophie Genello, effective through Feb. 29.
• Approved the resignations of food service employee Laura Galdieri, retroactive to Dec. 4, nurse assistant Margaret Myers, retroactive to Dec. 23, para profession Caitlin Needham, retroactive to Dec. 23, and custodian Edith Ryblewski, effective March 30.
• Appointed the following employees: Linda Wall as a long-term substitute family and consumer science teacher for the second semester, Sarah Simon and Samantha Morgan as long-term substitute elementary teachers for the second semester; Lindsay Iacovazzi as a long-term substitute elementary and secondary guidance counselor for the second semester; Casey Bogdan as a long-term substitute elementary teacher, effective Jan. 21; and Amanda Nitowski as a full-time transitional coordinator/school counselor for the 2015-16 school year.
The next Abington Heights School Board work session will be held 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 3 and its regular business meeting will be held Wednesday, Feb. 17 at the district’s administration building, 200 E. Grove St.
Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.