STAMFORD, Vt. -- Stamford Elementary School has a new principal after weeding through more than a dozen applicants.
Gregory Betti, who is an assistant principal at Hoosac Valley High School in Cheshire, Mass., was unanimously named to the position by the Stamford School Board at a special meeting July 31. He will replace Beth Choquette, who resigned in June after accepting a principal position at Bridge Street Elementary School in Northampton.
Betti, 57, said Tuesday that he has loved his time at Hoosac Valley, but the position in Stamford was an ideal opportunity.
"This will allow me to go back to working with younger students, which I particularly enjoyed," he said.
Before becoming assistant principal at Hoosac Valley in 2008, Betti was principal of the Gabriel Abbott Memorial School in Florida, Mass., for five years. Prior to that, he taught seventh-grade math at Herberg Middle School in Pittsfield for one year and taught health for three years to students in preschool through eighth grade in the North Berkshire School Union.
Betti, who lives in North Adams, said Stamford is very committed to its school, and he is excited about working with everyone to maximize resources and give students the best education possible.
"I'm looking forward to working in a small-town environment, where I'll be teaching technology and also working with teachers, staff and parents to try to improve the school," he said.
"He seems like the perfect fit for our school not only because of his teaching and school administrative background, but his demeanor and philosophy," she said.
He also has experience with technology instruction and will take on the responsibilities of a part-time technology teaching position in addition to serving as principal, she said.
Betti is expected to begin his duties as principal the week of Aug. 20, and his starting salary will be $70,000, she said.
James Sarkis, chairman of the principal interview committee, said they were looking for someone who could make some changes to the school, and Betti seemed like the best fit.
"Our last principal did a great job, but we have a lot of new teachers coming in. We need an experienced principal to get us in the place where we want to be," he said.
Betti's appointment came the same night the School Board named Stamford resident Susan Law to the position of third and fourth grade teacher.
Amy Maselli, a native of Stamford who lives in Clarksburg, was hired as the school's new preschool and kindergarten teacher at the School Board's meeting on Aug. 9. Also at that meeting, the board accepted the resignation of Alice Jenkins, who was the math and science teacher for grades five through eight. That position has since been advertised. The School Board has had to hire new part-time art, music and physical education teachers this summer as well.
Lamore said it's just one of those years when the school is seeing a high turnover in staff.
"I think every now and then we go through a cycle. People look to better themselves, and we wish them well on their endeavors," she said.
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