Kirk to Take the Helm of Hunking School; Health Leave Prompts Temporary Changes at Golden Hill

Hunking School (Jay Saulnier file photograph for WHAV News.)

Theresa Kirk, the principal at St. Mary of the Assumption School in Brookline, is taking over as principal at Caleb Dustin Hunking School in Bradford, while the emergency health leave of Principal Bruce Michitson at Golden Hill School is prompting temporary leadership changes there.

Kirk succeeds Shannon Gilligan who leaves for Methuen Aug. 1, to become supervisor of English Language Arts. In an email to families Wednesday, Kirk said she was St. Mary’s principal eight years and previously served as an elementary teacher, principal, guidance counselor, student services director, school psychologist and ultimately as a college dean.

“Returning to my public school roots is an opportunity I could not pass up!” She wrote.

Kirk noted her local connections, having created the Graduate Fellowship Program at Merrimack College which partnered with schools in Haverhill as it placed fellows in classrooms. She told parents she will “put students first in every decision” and offers “a transparent and open-door policy.”

Paula Rodriguez, who has served as assistant principal, has been named interim principal at Golden Hill elementary school, and Brendon Parker, assistant principal at Silver Hill School, moves to the same job at Golden Hill, according to an announcement from school Superintendent Margaret Marotta.

Rodriquez has been employed by Haverhill Public Schools since 2003 and has served as the assistant principal at Golden Hill since 2014. Parker has served as Silver Hill assistant principal since 2018, but previously was a fourth-grade teacher at Golden Hill for many years.

Rodriquez received her Master’s in Special Education from Endicott College and is currently one class shy of earning her Education Specialist in Administration, Planning and Policy, Ed. S. from UMass. Lowell.

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