Final candidate for Dartmouth superintendent makes his case

Mar 22, 2023

DARTMOUTH — The final candidate for the superintendent position, Dr. Robert Gerardi, Jr., superintendent of New Shoreham School Department on Block Island, R.I., was interviewed at the March 22 school committee meeting held at Dartmouth High School. 

The committee will appoint the district's new superintendent at their meeting on Monday, March, 27. 

Gerardi spoke of his time working in a variety of school districts, from suburban, largely urban, rural and most recently to island. Through all of this, he learned “there is actually more commonality than there [are] differences” in each area. 

Student learning and faculty development are important to Gerardi as is ensuring that professional development is available and beneficial. 

“Whatever I ask of staff, I do with them. I roll up my sleeves. These are working hands. I am not the executive type. I’m the type that wants to get in and work with the staff so that they know I'm there with them.”

This leadership style paired with his background working as Director of Finance at Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical High School, he argued, would help the district's financial situation and improve the quality of education offered. 

“If we create programs in our district, we have control of the quality of it and if we have extra seats, then our neighboring communities wouldn't have to spend private school tuition money to send their kids out. They could send them to our school.”

Gerardi sees a future of success for Dartmouth Schools striving not only to be the best in the state but also in the world. 

Residents in attendance said they were satisfied with Gerardi’s interview. 

“I got to see all three, and I think that Gerardi did a great job and I think that June, who is the assistant superintendent from Brockton, did a spectacular job too. So I think we would be in good hands with either one of them,” said Heather Noyes-Fredette, who has two kids in the Dartmouth school district. 

The School Committee interviewed two other candidates, Dr. June Saba-Maguire, assistant superintendent of Brockton Public Schools, and Dr. Andrea Schwamb, assistant superintendent of Wareham Public Schools, at their Monday, March 20 meeting. 

The new superintendent will succeed Dr. Bonny Gifford, the long-time school chief who recently retired. 

Community members are invited to reach out to the School Committee with their opinions or questions regarding the candidates before the committee’s decision-making meeting on Monday, March 27.