100 newbies to take helm in Nashua classes

NASHUA – For the second straight year, the Nashua School District will have more than 100 new teachers in its ranks.

Last week, the school board approved the nominations of 54 more teachers, including six new assistant principals, as well as the renominations of 12 teachers.

The board also approved eight resignations, and over the course of the last school year and the summer, 74 people retired, according to Superintendent Christopher Hottel.

Hottel said the turnover isn’t uncommon in a school district the size of Nashua, which has 18 schools and roughly 2,000 employees. The district has also had to fill five vacant principal positions this year because of retirements, which means seven of the city’s schools will have new leaders The turnover won’t affect the level of education the children are receiving, said Hottel, because the combination of veteran teachers and recent graduates gives the district a well-rounded foundation.

“It’s happening throughout New Hampshire as more and more people retire,” Hottel said. “It’s certainly good to have a mix. We have a mentor program that’s crucial to bring new people in. It’s important to have young teachers, new teachers who know new technology and philosophies.”

The board approved an additional assistant principal position for next year to ease the workload of the six current individuals. Karen Crebase, a former principal at Amherst Street Elementary School, was approved as a half-time assistant principal at New Searles Elementary School. She will share the position with Kerry Pillsbury, who will serve as the half-time assistant principal at Birch Hill Elementary School.

The new positions also include three new kindergarten teachers, which Hottel said allows the district to have full-day kindergarten classes at Fairgrounds Elementary School and Mount Pleasant Elementary School.

Hottel said 20 to 25 positions still need to be filled, and that he expects the hiring to be done before the school year begins. He said if the schools had to begin classes now, the staff members currently on payroll would be able to do the job, although interviews would continue until any vacant positions were filled.