Last Updated: Friday, April 10, 2020 3:09 PM
The Pelham School Board enthusiastically announces the selection of Dr. Eric “Chip” McGee as the next Superintendent of the Pelham School District. Dr. McGee will assume his leadership duties on July 1, 2020.
Dr. McGee brings with him a wealth of experience and extensive leadership qualities from his 20+ years in education. He currently serves as the Assistant Superintendent in the Methuen School District. Prior to joining Methuen in July 2019, he spent 15 years with the Bedford School District as Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment (11 years) and Superintendent of Schools (4 years). Before he became an administrator, Dr. McGee taught algebra, global studies, and physical science in New York City. He possesses a tremendous depth and breadth of experience, including building and renovation projects, strategic planning, technology initiatives, and collaboration to implement effective solutions in a wide variety of areas.
Dr. McGee holds a Bachelor of Arts in History from Brown University; received a Masters in Business Administration from Columbia University; and earned his Doctorate in Education from Columbia University. Dr. McGee is recognized as a dynamic, innovative, and well-respected administrator, and was honored by the NH School Administrators Association with the Outstanding Service Award in 2009.
We are fortunate to have found Dr. McGee, as he brings his passion and a shared vision to the District, and has a demonstrated history of commitment to high quality education in the communities he has served. Please join us in welcoming Dr. McGee to our Pelham School District family!
Dr. McGee shared his own excitement about joining the Pelham School District. “I am deeply honored to have the opportunity to serve the community of Pelham. Over the years, I have seen Pelham lead the way in New Hampshire in many ways including its ‘Future Ready’ approach to technology integration. I was drawn to Pelham because of its strong and supportive community, and I look forward to helping the young people of Pelham continue to thrive. In the coming weeks, I will find ways to introduce myself to parents, students, teachers, staff and the whole community; we will figure it out despite the challenges of school closure. Thank you for this opportunity.”
By way of background, the Pelham School Board had formed a Superintendent Search Committee in February, which included our three principals, teachers, union representation, SAU administrators, and community members. Just as the interview process was ready to begin, we found ourselves in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Committee navigated the world of video conferencing and conducted two rounds of remote interviews. When the stay-at-home order was extended until May 4th, we decided the selection of a new Superintendent could not be delayed; therefore, the Committee adjusted the search process accordingly.
After the second round of interviews, the Committee was unanimous in its support of moving Dr. McGee forward as the finalist for our next Superintendent. Due to the challenges of organizing and facilitating additional video conferences for staff and the community, the difficult decision had to be made to forgo public receptions, and to move Dr. McGee to the Board for final interviews. This was not the ideal process, but we truly believe that this was in the best interests of our entire Pelham School District community, especially considering the circumstances of our current environment.
We will plan to hold a public reception for Dr. McGee as soon as the stay-at-home order is lifted to give the staff and community the opportunity to meet and welcome Dr. McGee as our next Superintendent.
Superintendent of Schools
Last Updated: Friday, April 3, 2020 4:15 PM
We are completing our third week of remote learning. We implemented remote learning with just one day of preparation. This is an amazing accomplishment and I believe we have exceeded all expectations given this short time frame. There have been many challenges and successes along the way. We continue to learn, grow, and improve on our ability to meet the daily challenges of remote learning. No matter what the challenges are, our students, staff, and parents continue to meet those challenges and crush it!
Thank you all for the over 800 responses to our survey. The feedback was extremely positive and it has given us a great deal of information to continue to improve remote instruction and learning. We continue to explore modifying the current instructional schedule in order to better meet our students and staff needs. As we get used to the current schedule, it becomes easier to identify what our needs are going forward. More on this possibility will be forthcoming.
Below are some updates that I wish to share with you.
April Vacation Week – 4/27 thru 5/1 – No School
We have decided to maintain our traditional April vacation week. In discussions with staff, administration, parents, and students, it was clear that we need some time off to recharge and reflect on the work we have been doing.
Use of School Facilities
Next week we will be moving to one day of tech support for our teachers and students. On Wednesday, April 8, 2020, our tech support personnel will be available (by appointment only) to assist with tech tickets that could not be solved remotely. Buildings will be open on a more limited basis for staff. Please look for communication from your principal on the hours and instructions to access the buildings.
School playgrounds, fields, and tennis courts are not to be used at this time. We wish to help do our part and promote social distancing. Police will be patrolling school grounds and ask anyone in these areas to leave. We do however wish people to remain healthy and active. For this reason, Harris Track will be the one exception and be available for public use. Please remember to remain six feet away from others and remember the track is for walking, or jogging. No bicycles, roller blades, or cleats, are permitted. We wish to have this track for a long time and encourage all to do their part to protect it.
Recording Online Teaching Sessions
On a separate matter, it’s come to our attention that some students may be recording online teaching sessions or taking pictures without disclosing this to others in the remote classroom. This isn’t appropriate but more importantly, in New Hampshire it’s illegal to record a conversation or discussion without others agreeing to be recorded. New Hampshire is a two party consent state and we do not wish for our students to get in trouble if they are unaware of this law. We also do not want students posting pictures of minors (fellow students) without parental consent. Very few concerns have been raised, but it is important to encourage our children to be respectful of everyone involved and aware of the expectations.
I continue to be proud of all the work our staff, students, parents, administrators, and School Board are doing to support remote learning and the success of our students during this crisis. We continue to meet all challenges before us and are reminded daily we are all in this together. Thank you and enjoy the weekend.
Superintendent of Schools