TURNER — Becoming the superintendent of Maine School Administrative District 52 was something of a homecoming for Cari Medd.

Back in the 1990s, Medd taught social studies at Leavitt Area High School for seven years, additionally coaching field hockey. It was her first job after earning her teaching certification and master’s degree from Harvard University.

The first person to visit Medd after she returned to MSAD 52 in July was Leavitt’s long time field hockey coach, Wanda Ward-Mclean, the same person Medd had coached with back in the 1990s. Over the last month, she’s also reconnected with several parents and former students, one of whom now sits on the district’s Board of Directors.

It’s been nice seeing familiar faces, Medd said, and it’s been helpful to already have some knowledge about the district and surrounding communities.

Medd succeeded former MSAD 52 superintendent Kimberly Brandt, who retired at the end of June after five years leading the district.

Medd’s depth of experience with a neighboring school district and her past connection to MSAD 52 helped her stand out from a “terrific pool of applicants,” according to board Chairperson Elizabeth Bullard. An advisory committee consisting of directors, staff and community members helped single out Medd’s application.


Strong communication was the most important quality community members wished to have in a new superintendent, Bullard said, adding that Medd fit that criteria well.

“I think everybody’s pretty excited,” she added.

Before returning to MSAD 52 — which serves Greene, Leeds and Turner — Medd spent 16 years as the principal of Poland Regional High School. She took a job teaching social studies at the newly-built school in 1999, and eventually advanced to become the top administrator in 2006.

In 2014, Medd, a graduate of Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, was named Maine’s secondary Principal of the Year.

“I enjoy solving problems and helping people to sort of grow and become the best that they can be in their role,” Medd said. “As a classroom teacher, I got more and more interested in things that were happening outside of my classroom.”

Ready to move beyond managing a single school, Medd said she’s excited to tackle a whole new set of challenges as superintendent of MSAD 52.


Some school administrators may say they don’t like dealing with maintenance or transportation, but to Medd, it’s all important for making sure that kids have what they need to succeed.

“I think what everybody does in a school district matters completely,” Medd said. “You know, more so than maybe in a business where the goal there is the success of the business. Here, the goal is children who are raised to be productive citizens in our communities.”

For students and teachers to succeed, she believes supporting MSAD 52’s principals is particularly crucial.

“Principals are so essential to the health and well being of a school building,” she said. “They set the tone for how all the adults are going to interact with the kids all day long. And so, supporting those people and making sure they have what they need to be able to do their job well is essential.”

For now, Medd and her team are focused on getting new administrative hires trained and filling staff vacancies as schools gear up for the start of the school year.

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