Saccarappa Elementary College Principal Brian Mazjanis will take over because the Westbrook College Division’s interim finance director within the wake of Heather Neal’s resignation final week.
The varsity division is now in search of an interim principal for Saccarappa and a everlasting substitute for Neal.
Neal has been broadly credited with serving to slash the college division’s deficit to $588,054 from the greater than $three million in debt uncovered in early 2020 and blamed on monetary mismanagement.
Neal was employed August 2020 when metropolis officers instructed the college division to rent a finance director with applicable monetary data.
Whereas Mazjanis doesn’t have a background in finance, Mayor Mike Foley, a vocal critic of the division’s earlier monetary issues, mentioned he and Metropolis Administrator Jerre Bryant suppose Mazjanis will do nicely, particularly as soon as the college division fills an open accountant place.
“I’m optimistic he’ll be capable of fulfill this position and assist the college division navigate by means of this time. He’ll admit he doesn’t have all of the accounting expertise, however he’s been a faculty administrator for a long time and is superintendent-licensed,” Foley mentioned.
“They acknowledge by means of the deficit that they have been weak in finance administration of the colleges,” he added, “and I really feel like they are making an attempt to step up and make enhancements.”
Superintendent Peter Lancia mentioned the choice to convey Mazjanis on board so rapidly was as a result of the division had an instantaneous want for a finance director to proceed engaged on the deficit and to cope with a variety of grants. Principals are simpler to search out than finance administrators, he mentioned.
Mazjanis has a Ph.D in public coverage with a focus in instructional management and coverage from the College of Southern Maine. He first began within the faculty district as an interim principal in 2006. He just lately had surgical procedure and didn’t reply to requests for remark earlier than the American Journal’s deadline.
Neal, a resident of South China, mentioned her lack of success find housing nearer to Westbrook was her main purpose for stepping down.
“I’m unhappy to go away Westbrook. I had long-term plans for the district and seemed ahead to main WSD towards nice alternatives. I hope all my laborious work will proceed to pave the best way for years to return,” Neal mentioned.
She has accepted a job as finance director for the nonprofit Maine Math & Science Alliance in Augusta.