Eric Nakajima, Amherst-Pelham Regional School Committee Chair, and Anastasia Ordonez, Union 26 School Committee Chair, are pleased to announce that the committees have voted to extend the appointment of Dr. Michael Morris as Interim Superintendent of the Amherst, Pelham and Regional Schools for the 2017-2018 school year. The unanimous vote of both committees occurred at a joint meeting held on Tuesday, April 4, 2017, and the vote is contingent upon successful contract negotiations between Dr. Morris and the School Committees.
A 16-year veteran in the districts, Morris began his work in the district as a 5th and 6th grade teacher at Fort River Elementary School. He then became the principal of Crocker Farm Elementary School before moving into district administration first as Director of Evaluation and Assessment and then as Assistant Superintendent. Morris was appointed Interim Superintendent in September 2016.
“The committee is grateful to Dr. Morris for his steady leadership over the past year,” said Eric Nakajima, “he is a gifted educational leader and we are looking forward to a full academic year in which he can work with us, the staff and community to advance our mission of educational excellence for all students.”
Dr. Morris holds a Bachelor's degree from Amherst College, a Master's and CAGS from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and a Doctoral degree from Boston College. His work on Educator Evaluation has been profiled as one of the four exemplary districts in the state by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. He has also presented at statewide conferences on a variety of topics for the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents, the Massachusetts Elementary Principals' Association, DESE's Spring Convening on Educator Evaluation, as well as others.
“I have enjoyed the opportunity to serve as Interim Superintendent and to work collaboratively with the School Committees and the outstanding faculty and staff of our districts on behalf of our students,” Morris stated. “I look forward to continuing that work for another year.”
"Teachers, parents, staff and community leaders have repeatedly expressed their enthusiastic support for Dr. Morris's work so far, and I'm pleased that the Committees voted to have him continue as Interim Superintendent for the next academic year," said Ms. Ordonez. "Dr. Morris is a steady and collaborative leader who is committed to the excellence of all our students, and we are grateful for his many years of service to this community and school district."