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Blozowich resigns as United superintendent

Jeff Himler
| Thursday, June 14, 2012, 7:47 p.m.

ARMAGH — After three years serving as superintendent of United School District, Dr. David Blozowich is preparing to take on a similar role at a much larger district in northeastern Pennsylvania.

The school board accepted his resignation with regret at Tuesday's regular meeting.

Blozowich said he learned last Thursday, the day after graduation ceremonies at United High School, that he'd been approved to lead the administration at Western Wayne School District -- located in Lake Ariel, Wayne County, northeast of Wilkes-Barre and Scranton.

He said the district is "almost exactly double" the size of United, with a budget of about $40 million and student enrollment of 2,500.

Blozowich, who came to United after a stint as principal of Laurel Valley Middle/High School, said he'd previously lived in eastern Pennsylvania and had hoped to return there at some point.

Leaving United "wasn't an easy decision," he said. But, with his daughter preparing to attend kindergarten, he noted, "If we're going to make a change, this is the time to make it."

Aug. 10 will be his final day of work at United. This early in the transition process, he indicated, the district has yet to formulate a strategy for searching for his replacement.

Looking back on his time at United, Blozowich said he feels satisfaction at having implemented a professional learning communities approach that provides time for teachers in different disciplines to coordinate instructional strategies for their students.

Other good moves during his tenure, he said, have included initiating the district's new Sapphire information management system and "reorganization of staffing that I think has benefited this district"?-- including hiring new directors of finance, education and special services to replace veterans who left those posts.

Employment of Patrick Noel as United's new director of special services also occurred at Tuesday's meeting. He was slated to begin work the very next day, at a salary of $76,960. Blozowich said Noel, who was most recently employed at Northern Bedford County School District, has experience as a supervisor of special education and a special education teacher.

He will replace Robert Jones, who retired from that position as well as from the role of assistant high school principal -- a slot that is to remain vacant for now.

The school board approved a revised job description for the director of special services that adds responsibility for gifted education programs at United. The board tabled action on revision of job descriptions for the director of finance and board secretary.

Kristie Folk, who has worked as a student teacher at United, was hired as the new high school agricultural science instructor, at a salary of $40,000.

The board named Tyler Stokes, recently an assistant basketball coach, as the new head boys' varsity basketball coach at a salary of $4,601.14. Katherine Mehalik was hired as the assistant varsity cheerleading coach, at $1,569.13.

The board agreed to advertise for replacements for supplemental positions resigned by the following: Nathan Bevard and Chris Wagner, head varsity and junior high wrestling coaches, respectively; Cullen Stokes, assistant varsity football coach and weight room supervisor; Becky McLaughlin, assistant girls' softball coach; and James Cawley, graduation project coordinator.

United agreed to increase Barbara Turner's stipend from $2,000 to $2,100 for serving as the school board's recording secretary.<

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