UPDATED: School Committee to Vote on $88M Budget Largely Sight Unseen: ‘Are We Supposed to Guess What’s In It?’

Editor’s Note: The two sides of the School Committee dispute each other’s accounts, as shown below in this updated version. WHAV received, along with Committee members, an emailed version of the budget at 1:45 p.m., Thursday. Haverhill Public Schools Superintendent Margaret Marotta is asking members of the city’s School Committee to approve the 2020 budget Thursday night—but some sitting on the board tell WHAV they’ll be doing so largely sight unseen. Though Marotta and the School Committee workshopped a general overview of her proposed $88,856,526 budget for the next school year last month during public sessions at Harbor Place, School Committee member Scott Wood tells WHAV he and others have yet to pore over the hundreds of individual line items—doing a potential disservice to city families and taxpayers. “I don’t know how any member of the School Committee could vote for a $90 million budget they have never seen.

Haverhill Expects to Name New Hunking, Silver Hill Principals For Next School Year

Two new principals are expected at Haverhill schools next school year, pending final negotiations. Shannon Gilligan, who currently works at a Woburn-based school coaching and leadership training organization is slated to become principal of Caleb Dustin Hunking School. Gilligan replaces Shannon Nolan, who is leaving the school district to become principal at Amesbury Elementary School. Mary Ellen Lucas is also expected to be promoted to principal at Silver Hill Elementary School. She currently serves as assistant principal there.

Haverhill Central Catholic Sophomore Wins Senate Praise for Track and Field Records

A Haverhill sophomore attending Central Catholic High School was recognized by the Massachusetts State Senate Tuesday for her two years of Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field success. Katharine Duren, a sophomore hurdler, broke the meet and school records Saturday during the Merrimack Valley Conference championship. She won in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 14.57 seconds, state Sen. Diana DiZoglio told her State House colleagues. “Katharine is one of the brightest athletic stars in the Merrimack Valley,” said DiZoglio, who invited Duren to the State House for a celebration in her honor. “Her impressive dedication has served her and her fellow Raiders well and it is my hope that she continues her success collegiately at the highest level in the coming years.”

Duren received a standing ovation in the Senate Chamber after receiving an official citation in honor of her accomplishment.

Haverhill’s TEACH Students Participate for the First Time in Special Olympics

Thirty-five students from Haverhill Public Schools’ TEACH program are participating for the first time today at the Special Olympics games at Lawrence High School’s Veterans Memorial Stadium. The students enrolled in the Therapeutic Education Assessment Center of Haverhill at St. James School—TEACH for short—will compete against athletes from around the Merrimack Valley in running and walking events, tennis ball toss and other track and field games. “All the kids and the teachers and our parents are talking about it and are very much looking forward to it,” TEACH Director Lyn A. Snow said. The TEACH program is a separate day school program that provides students with individualized, skill-based educational experiences and tailored behavioral support plans.

Andover Appoints Nettle’s Corkery Principal of West Middle School

After six years in Haverhill, Nettle Middle School’s Timothy Corkery is moving on. Andover Public Schools has appointed Corkery principal of that district’s West Middle School, Communications Director Nicole L. Kieser tells WHAV. He won the position over Tracy Davis Sands, from Kingston Tenn., and will succeed retiring West Middle School Principal Rebecca Franks, Kieser said. Corkery, a retired Navy commander named Nettle principal in 2013, has seen the Boardman Street school through a wealth of behavioral issues in recent months. In March, School Committee members called for Superintendent Margaret Marotta to take immediate action and install a School Resource Officer after parents cited a “leadership problem.”

The school also experienced two “non credible” bomb threats in April, police said.

Hunking School Mourns Unexpected Passing of Teacher Paquette: ‘Loved and Respected by All’

The Hunking Bobcats are in mourning. Over the weekend, Hunking School Principal Shannon Nolan confirmed the unexpected Saturday death of seventh and eighth grade teacher Michelle Paquette, letting families know the “difficult news” via email ahead of Monday’s opening bell. Counselors were available for students on Monday, said Nolan, who did not go into details about the teacher’s passing. “Michelle was loved and respected by all of our students. She came to school every day with a smile on her face and found a way to connect with her students and make school a safe, happy place for them,” Nolan said in her message to parents.

Haverhill Renews Search for Asst. School Supt. After Being Unable to Reach Pact with Silva

The sole candidate for Haverhill school’s new assistant superintendent is out, and the School Committee is hoping an up to $165,000 yearly salary will attract a new round of candidates before the end of the month. Talks with Maria Silva, the current business manager for Greater Lawrence Technical School, broke down during negotiations a week ago. A member of the subcommittee, Paul A. Magliocchetti, declined to identify specific areas of contention. “We couldn’t come to terms on a contract. We decided to repost it,” Magliocchetti told WHAV Friday.

Haverhill High Senior O’Leary Receives HEA Scholarship; Plans to Study Law

A graduating Haverhill High School senior was awarded at least $2,000 to help him study law this fall. Sean O’Leary was awarded the Haverhill Education Association scholarship during the union’s annual dinner last Wednesday. Eighteen-year-old O’Leary, who plans to attend UMass Amherst, told WHAV he received the good news two weeks ago. “I was pretty excited. I need money for college.