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Congratulations to new Superintendent, Dr. Judith Paolucci

Concluding a three-month search that drew applicants from across New England, the Smithfield School Committee has named Dr. Judith J. Paolucci as its next superintendent of schools.

“We are thrilled to bring such a talented instructional leader to our community,” School Committee Chair Sean Clough said. “Dr. Paolucci brings a wide array of experiences as a classroom teacher, coordinator, and leader in a variety of settings, all of which will serve her and us well in the coming years.”

Congratulations

Currently the superintendent for the Leicester (MA) Public Schools, Dr. Paolucci is the former superintendent of schools for the Yarmouth (ME) School Department, where she served from 2009-2014. She is also the former assistant superintendent for the Narragansett school system.

During her tenure in Leicester, Dr. Paolucci improved technology infrastructure and access throughout the district, including establishing a one-to-one Chromebook initiative at the high school. She is also credited with improving town-school relations through effective communication and a transparent budget process, supporting the development of leadership skills through regular trainings for teacher leaders and administrators, and ensuring support for students who are not meeting academic expectations through a data-based “Response to Intervention” model.

Throughout her career, Dr. Paolucci has emphasized facilitating curriculum development, implementing effective professional development programs, managing grant and local budget funds, and working with school-based administrators to meet state and federal mandates and improving the quality of instruction in all schools.

Dr. Paolucci, who earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Rhode Island College, holds a master’s degree in environmental studies from Brown University, and a doctoral degree in education from the University of Rhode Island/Rhode Island College.

In addition, she brings 10 years of high school teaching experience and is a former science curriculum coordinator. She served as executive director of the Rhode Island Teaching and Learning Center, where she researched, planned, and implemented effective professional development programs for RI teachers and instructional coaches, facilitating RI’s National Board Certification Initiative.

In its hiring process, the search committee reviewed 20 applicants for the position, and interviewed eight candidates, all of whom were current superintendents, and all held doctoral degrees, Mr. Clough said.

“It was a very strong applicant pool, with extremely qualified candidates,” he said. “We feel we have found the right person for this job.”
Dr. Paolucci replaces Smithfield’s longtime superintendent of schools, Robert O’Brien, who announced his intent to retire later this summer. Dr. Paolucci’s start date is August 1.