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Grantham Hires Superintendent

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 6/7/2017 12:08:07 AM
Modified: 6/7/2017 12:08:28 AM

Grantham — A longtime New Hampshire educator and school administrator recently was selected to succeed outgoing Grantham Superintendent Jacqueline Guillette.

Sydney Leggett, of Gilford, N.H., will take over as superintendent of the one-school SAU 75 on July 1, according to a news release on the district’s website.

She’ll be paid $65,000 a year over the course of her two-year contract, School Board Chairman John Eylander said. The position will remain part time, he said, and the district is offering Leggett an additional $3,000 in education reimbursements.

Leggett said on Tuesday she looks forward to becoming a visible member of the school community, getting to actively know teachers and children at the Grantham Village School. With a little more than 200 students enrolled in kindergarten through the eighth grade, she said, the district’s size is welcoming to administrators looking to spend time in the classroom.

“I thought, ‘With a district of this size, that’s very possible,’ which is one of the reasons I was so excited about (the position),” she said. “I love being in the classroom and in the schools.”

Leggett said the district’s care for its students drew her to seek the position, along with teachers’ commitment to the social and physical well-being of children. She comes to Grantham with more than two decades of experience in education, including work as a teacher and principal in Granite State schools.

After graduating with a bachelor’s in arts from Oberlin College, she went on to obtain a master’s in education from St. Michael’s College. Leggett also holds an education specialist degree in administration and supervision from the University of New Hampshire. She previously spent 10 years as a high school English teacher in Gilford and Belmont, N.H., before becoming a director of instruction and then principal of the Alton Central School in Alton, N.H.

Leggett then served as principal of the nearby Gilford Middle School for a year before leaving to form the educational consulting firm Youth, Education, Tomorrow with former Alton Superintendent Bill Lander. She’s worked with Lander over the past two years while also pursuing a doctorate in educational leadership from Southern New Hampshire University.

Leggett currently lives in Gilford with her husband and three children. She initially intends to commute to Grantham from the Lakes Region, saying on Tuesday that moving would be inconvenient for her high school-age children.

Eylander said Leggett’s resume and positive interactions with School Board members, staffers and parents during the superintendent search made her stand out. She met “or exceeded every qualification” the search committee outlined for the position, he said in an email.

“Her interview at the Grantham Village School was excellent, and the School Board received positive feedback about her from everyone involved in the process, including teachers, staff, students and parents,” Eylander said.

The district began searching for a new superintendent in January after Guillette announced her retirement after five years in Grantham.

Her departure from the district will end decades as an Upper Valley administrator. She previously served for nine years as the superintendent of SAU 6, which includes Claremont, Cornish and Unity, and was an assistant superintendent and middle school principal in Lebanon.

Leggett said she’s heard about the “tremendous amount of work” Guillette has done for the district and hopes to continue building on those efforts.

Tim Camerato can be reached at tcamerato@vnews.com or 603-727-3223.




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