Seven Named to Superintendent Transition Team
Jaimey Caron, an At Large member of the Portland Board of Public Education, will chair a Transition Team of external stakeholders who will help ease entry and inform district initiatives for Emmanuel Caulk, the newly appointed superintendent of the Portland Public Schools.
The other members of the Transition Team are:
- Maxwell Chikuta, a Congolese immigrant and father of four Portland students who earned a GED at Portland Adult Education and has gone on to earn associates, bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
- Catherine King, an interior designer, active school volunteer and parent of two Portland elementary students.
- Brian S. Petrovek, managing owner / chief executive officer of the Portland Pirates hockey team.
- Clare Ruthenburg, a retired educator, Portland resident and parent of a Portland Public Schools graduate.
- Ethan Strimling, chief executive officer of LearningWorks and a former state senator.
- An administrator representing the post-secondary education sector, who will be named at a future date.
In announcing the appointments, Board Chair Kate Snyder noted that many people volunteered to serve on the team.
“I am so appreciative of so many people’s willingness and interest in helping to orient our new superintendent to Portland,” Snyder said. “The community’s response to the Transition Team is very encouraging. Please know that the board is dedicated, along with Mr. Caulk, to providing access points for people throughout the transition to new leadership and well beyond.” Snyder noted that the Portland Public Schools staff will have opportunities to share their insights and help with transition through internal stakeholder groups to be formed by the new superintendent.
Caron, the Transition Team chair, said, “The change in district leadership gives us an opportunity to look at how we engage the community we serve - students, parents, taxpayers and businesses - with the goal of increasing opportunities for public participation and feedback. I’m very excited to work with the transition team and Mr. Caulk to strengthen the important communication needed to build and sustain a system of great schools.”
Working under Caulk’s direction, the Transition Team will help address needs, concerns and priorities of the community. The team is charged with identifying all community-based groups working in support of the Portland Public Schools and making suggestions regarding the formation of any additional community-based support necessary to improve public process and engagement toward achievement of district goals.
The team will submit a report of its findings with suggested next steps to the school board by December 31.
The board unanimously approved a resolution creating the team at its June 26th meeting. The team will help ensure the continuation of initiatives now underway such as creating more pathways to high school graduation, modernizing the district’s elementary buildings and improving technology.