Westbrook has a new principal


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  • Deanne Somers is the new principal at Westbrook School.



BY PATRICIA KELLER

The West Milford Board of Education appointed Deanne Somers as the new principal for Westbrook School at its July 22 meeting. Somers replaces former principal Siobhan Tauchert who was hired last year but announced her resignation in March to take a position in another district as of July 1. A press release from the district stated, “In a competitive process of review of 182 applicants, Ms. Somers' qualifications set her apart from the field of candidates.”

Somers most recently served for seven years as the district-wide director of Curriculum, Assessment and Instructional Services at Woodcliff Lake Public Schools. Over her career experience of 13 years in elementary education, she served as a gifted and talented teacher, technology specialist and fifth grade teacher.

Somers’ academic credentials include an educational specialist degree in Instructional Leadership, two master’s degrees and a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and psychology.

“Ms. Somers' impressive experience, academic credentials, outstanding references and personal philosophy of instructional leadership makes her the ideal candidate to lead the school community of Westbrook," said the release. "Westbrook School encompasses grades K-6 and has an enrollment of 355 students, the largest elementary school in the district. Westbrook School is known for its highly qualified and dedicated staff, its involved and dedicated parents and overall quality of education.”

Somers spoke enthusiastically at the board of education meeting after her appointment. She said she was impressed during the interview process with the active support of the teachers and PTA and is looking forward to starting in her new position. Somers said she is eager to share knowledge, resources, strategies and support with her staff and work together to support the children of Westbrook School.

Somers' appointment is effective July 23, 2014 through June 30, 2015, at the salary of $118,000.00 with health benefits.

The meeting's agenda included 30 individual recommendations for hire. West Milford Superintendent of Schools Dr. James McLaughlin said that is approximately 50 percent of the district’s current need to fill vacant and new staff positions.

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