TRSU offers superintendent position to Fierman

By Shawn Cunningham
© 2020 Telegraph Publishing LLC

Last night, the Two Rivers Supervisory Union board offered Green Mountain High School Principal Lauren Fierman a two-year contract to replace Meg Powden as superintendent beginning on July 1, 2020. Powden resigned from the post on Jan. 13 effective June 30, 2020, opting not to complete the second year of her two-year contract.

GM Principal Lauren Fierman applauds the graduating seniors at Green Mountain last year. Telegraph file photo

Fierman’s short tenure at GM — she took over from Tom Ferenc, who retired in July 2018 —  has been anything but uneventful.

In August 2018, a broken flange caused flooding in the mechanical room of Chester-Andover Elementary School leading to its closure until January 2019. The elementary school’s 240 students moved into every available nook and cranny of the high school for four difficult months.

Then in February 2019 the school received threats, one of which forced police to lock down, then evacuate the premises and lead to changes in the school’s security procedures. Fierman’s performance in both cases was praised by the school board.

“I think that in these uncertain times, we are fortunate to have Lauren apply,” said Joe Fromberger, chair of the board of the Green Mountain Unified School District. “She has the administrative and leadership experience we need and it’s an extra plus that she is in-house and familiar with the district.”

GM Board chair Joe Fromberger noted that there were still a couple of hoops to jump through, including background checks and the approval of the Agency of Education, before Lauren Fierman’s appointment is finalized. 

Fromberger noted that there were still a couple of hoops to jump through, including background checks and the approval of the Agency of Education, before her appointment is finalized. Fromberger also said that he believes that the SU would begin advertising for a new principal shortly and asks for volunteers to serve on a search committee at the next GM board meeting.

Fierman: Define success, meet with the public

Fierman told The Telegraph on Friday that she applied to become superintendent because she cares about the students, the staff and the community.

“I felt a connection when I applied to be the principal. A week after I was offered the job, we began looking for a home on Main Street and it was a love at first sight. It feels like family.”

As for her direction in taking over the schools Fierman said, “We have a missing piece within the districts and the SU. That is a shared definition of what success looks like. Until the community, the school board, the teachers, families and students share a vision of what a great school looks like, we can’t get there. You have to define the goal to make the goal.”

She emphasized that she intends to reach out to the communities within the SU — Mt. Holly, Cavendish, Chester, Andover, Baltimore and Ludlow.

“I will be looking for ways to talk with as many people as possible remotely holding virtual town halls, an open forum. I don’t have a timeline but it is important for me to hear from everybody,” she said.

In her previous life, Fierman had been director of curriculum, instruction and assessment at Regional School District No. 8 in Hebron, Conn. She also worked as a district data coach, an English department chair and a middle school teacher.

In addition to her work in education, Fierman holds a law degree from Harvard Law School and has owned and operated a stable and taught riding and dressage.

— Cynthia Prairie contributed to this article.

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