City school district hires 21 new staff for 2021-22 year

Ogdensburg Free Academy will see a number of new faces this 2021-2022 school year. Matt Curatolo/The Journal

OGDENSBURG — There will be some new faces in the classrooms and walking the halls throughout the Ogdensburg City School District today as the new school year begins.

The city school board of education has appointed 21 new hires for the 2021-2022 school year.

“We had a committee for each position consisting of teachers and administrators,” said Superintendent Kevin Kendall, “They would choose the finalists who would then go to the board of education for appointment.”

The 21 new hires were made possible by a large number of retirees and grant funding.

“We had several retirements this year,” said Kendall. “For the first time ever, we’re doing full day universal pre-kindergarten for our four-year-olds so that generated a need for a few new classrooms. We also got federal money and with that there is a 20 percent requirement that had to be spent on learning laws so we added a few academic support teachers.”

Brooke L. Reid replaces Jacquelyn L. Kelly as the assistant superintendent. Kelly joined the Gouverneur Central School District as their superintendent this year. Before joining the city school district, Reid was the elementary principal and committee on special education chair for 11 ½ years at Parishville-Hopkinton Central School.

Rebecca J. Bascom is the new director of special education. Bascom had been the principal at Clifton-Fine Central School for four and a half years. Prior to that she had 22 years of special education experience.

Andrew Rupert, James Fox and Kriston Webb will also be working in the special education department with Rupert as a secondary special education teacher at Ogdensburg Free Academy (OFA), Webb as an elementary special education teacher at Madill, and Fox as a secondary special education teacher at OFA in the resource room.

The elementary school saw two longtime teachers in Christine Hammond and Dorothy “Dot” Farrell retire at the end of the 2020-2021 school year.

Hired back in June were Jocelyn Doyle, Jennifer Smith, David Doyle, Jennie Dalton and Janet Beaudin to teach at the elementary level.

At OFA, John Tebo and Kathy Swan retired after 30-plus years each of teaching experience.

Jack Manke will be the new social studies teacher and Mary Willmart and Lauren Gilmour will be teaching visual arts.

The board of education also hired Jillian White as a secondary literacy teacher, Tamara Rosemyer as a teacher of speech and language disabilities, Ryan Davis as an elementary literacy teacher, and Danielle Spicer as a secondary literacy teacher.

The mathematics department will have two new hires, Mario Diaz-Montiel as a secondary mathematics teacher and Becky Duprey as a part-time secondary mathematics teacher.

Matthew Sholette will be a part-time physical education teacher and Kylie Pinkerton will work as a secondary spanish teacher.

“Obviously we have not had this many hires at one time in quite some time,” said Kendall. “We believe we were able to secure some really highly qualified staff. They’ve all been assigned a mentor from one of our seasoned veterans here in the district. We believe they have what it takes to continue the tradition of educating the students of Ogdensburg City School District.”

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