Ridgefield schools hired 15 new teachers, 20 staffers
As students come trundling off the bus for their first day of school this August, they’ll be met by dozens of new faces across the district’s nine schools. From high school English teachers to elementary school nurses and school psychologists, Ridgefield has hired 35 staff and faculty members in time for the start of school.
The high school hired six new teachers, the most faculty hires out of the nine schools in the district. Among them were two new English teachers, a special education teacher, a science teacher, a social studies teacher, and a math teacher.
The new teaching staff include a special education teacher, a speech and language pathologist, and a literacy specialist at Barlow Mountain Elementary; an elementary teacher at Ridgebury; a health teacher at East Ridge Middle school; a school counselor at Scotts Ridge Middle School; an elementary teacher at Farmingville.
The schools also hired two school psychologists to split their time across four elementary schools. One will work with students at Farmingville Elementary and Ridgebury Elementary, and the other at Barlow Mountain and Scotland Elementary.
Three specialists were hired to work district-wide — two occupational therapists, and a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.
A new school nurse, Lynn Isaac, was hired at Barlow Mountain Elementary.
Across the district, 16 new paraeducators will be working in classrooms this year. Special education saw the most hires, with seven new instructional paras hired at three elementary schools, East Ridge Middle School, and the high school. Five supervisory paras were hired at the high school, Veterans Park Elementary, Barlow Mountain Elementary, Scotland Elementary, and Farmingville Elementary. Two clerical paras were hired at Scotland Elementary and Scotts Ridge Middle School, and an instructional paraeducator was hired for the high school library.
Personnel Director Karen Dewing noted the district hired fewer people this school year than in the past.
“My office has not computed all staffing… but we are well suited to start the school year,” she told the Board of Education, Monday night.
Vice Chairman Doug Silver asked about the positions still open.
“There’s no classroom positions still open,” Dewing clarified.
Silver noted the schools held back on hiring a coordinator for their science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programming.
Interim Superintendent JeanAnn Paddyfote quickly added the schools have completed interviews for the job.
“That position will be filled shortly,” Paddyfote said.