New Pomfret superintendent looking forward to challenge of new school year

By Denise Coffey - Staff Writer
Pomfret - posted Mon., Aug. 26, 2013

Twenty-four years after serving as a principal at Mary R. Fisher School in Thompson, Matt Bisceglia, Ed. D, has returned to northeastern Connecticut. He was named the Pomfret superintendent in July. He brings with him seven years of experience as a high school principal in Windsor Locks and seven years in Cromwell as a superintendent. He officially retired from Cromwell in June, but when the possibility and opportunity to work in Pomfret presented itself, he threw his hat into the ring. “I was very pleased to be selected,” he said.

He's been getting familiar with the particulars of the Pomfret Community School since July, when he was offered the job. With 425 students and 45 teachers, PCS is a relatively small district. But he's gearing up for what may be a year that's more challenging for smaller districts. Connecticut is one of 45 states that have applied for more than $4 billion in federal money that's available through the Race to the Top Initiative (RTT). In order to get that money, states had to subscribe to a Common Core Curriculum and use standardized teacher evaluation forms.

“There's no other way to say it,” Bisceglia said. “It's going to be a challenge for everybody, especially the smaller districts that have fewer certified individuals to carry the evaluation plan forward. That's going to be a capacity issue.” School staff who are authorized to do evaluations must be certified.

Bisceglia spent eight days training for the teacher and administrator evaluation models. “It's a complex tool that looks at specific areas of teacher and administrator effectiveness,” he said. He's counting on his background as a principal to help him serve as a resource for teachers in the school. “I want to assist them in any way possible so they understand what the expectations are,” he said. “I think we're in this together. We'll see how it plays out.”

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