DIXFIELD — Dirigo High School and T.W. Kelly Dirigo Middle School Principal Mike Poulin told Regional School Unit 56 directors Tuesday night that he’s doubtful two positions will be filled before classes start Aug. 30.

The vacancies are a guidance counselor for grades kindergarten through eight and a part-time gifted and talented position for grades K through 12.

“I’m not optimistic that we’re going to get a lot of interest in those positions,” Poulin said. “We have had one applicant for the K through eight guidance position, but the person is not certified, and I don’t believe we have an applicant for the gifted and talented position.”

To cover the guidance counselor position at the middle school, administrators contacted Stephanie LeBlanc at Oxford County Mental Health Services, Poulin said. The agency agreed to have staff available at the school two days a week to meet with students individually and in groups, and to do classroom presentations.

Another vacancy for a social studies teacher at the middle school was filled Tuesday by Chris Whitney, who was a science teacher at the school this year but lost his position because of budget considerations.

“We, fortunately, were able to take him back,” Poulin said.

Dirigo Elementary School Principal Charlie Swan told the board he had two special education educational technician III positions and one Title I educational technician III position not filled, but he has some substitutes available if they are not filled when school starts.

The enrollment this year at Dirigo Elementary School is 365 students, he said.

In other news, Dirigo Middle School teacher Abby Wood and Dirigo High School teacher Beth Edwards asked the board’s approval for a 12-day student trip to Switzerland and Italy in 2019. They are requesting the approval now so students can save their money to pay for it, they said.

The $3,820 cost per student includes flights, hotel rooms and two meals a day.

Also attending Tuesday’s board meeting was Susan Moore, who was hired in July as director of special services. Her previous position was in New Orleans for Education One, LLC, Einstein Charter Network.

Other hires and job transfers include:

• Butch McKenna of Dixfield as Dirigo High School golf coach;

• Joyce Elliot from Dirigo Elementary School Title 1 teacher to classroom teacher at that school;

• Robin Daily from Dirigo Middle School life skills to Dirigo Elementary School Title I; 

• Moriah Briggs from Dirigo Elementary School special education to Dirigo Middle School life skills; and

• Sonya Arsenault from a grade 5 classroom position to Dirigo Elementary School special educational technician III.

Rachel Buck was recalled to alternative education teacher at Dirigo High School and Carole Rickards was recalled to educational technician III for special education at Dirigo Middle School.

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Dr. Susan Moore was hired by RSU 56 in July as Director of Special Services. Moore’s last position was in New Orleans for Education One, LLC, Einstein Charter Network.

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