Back to school: New leadership team in Bath-area RSU 1

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BATH — Regional School Unit 1, like nearby School Administrative District 75, is starting its 2011-2012 year with two new people at the helm.

Patrick Manuel replaced William Shuttleworth as superintendent July 1. The Topsham resident was previously assistant superintendent of Regional School Unit 21, which includes Arundel, Kennebunk and Kennebunkport.

Prior to that he was principal at Phippsburg Elementary School from 2000-2004, and an assistant principal and athletic director at Wiscasset High School.

Wayne Dorr started Aug. 1 as RSU 1 assistant superintendent, replacing Bob Young. Dorr was interim superintendent in Camden-Rockport – where Shuttleworth is now superintendent – and previously was curriculum director for School Union 47, which consolidated with Bath in 2008 to form RSU 1.

Manuel said one of his key goals is to “establish an efficient transition of leadership that keeps the focus on student achievement.”

He said he also wants to develop collaborative relationships with staff, the School Board and the community, something he has been able to work on this summer. He said it’s important to be “very visible and (get) to know people on a personal level.”

“Everybody has a different … role in the educational process here, and it’s my job to try to balance those roles and be supportive, but also address concerns that people may have,” Manuel said.

Kindergarten through ninth-grade classes start Tuesday, Sept. 6, in RSU 1, while grades 10-12 begin the following day.

The staff and students of Woolwich Central School are at the Huse School in Bath this school year while most of the existing Woolwich school is demolished and a new one is built.

The new Nequasset Road school, which should be complete by next spring and open for classes that September, will measure approximately 66,000 square feet, about twice the size of the current building.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.