Brunswick hires new high school principal from India school

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BRUNSWICK — An educator working in Mumbai, India, was hired Oct. 26 to be the new principal at Brunswick High School.

The School Board hired Maine native Shanna Crofton at a morning meeting, where she was nominated by Superintendent of Schools Paul Perzanoski.

“The references I spoke to talked about a very strong work ethic in the area of personnel and professionalism,” Perzanoski said later.

Crofton said she will not take the post until July 1, 2014, because she has to finish her current contract at Oberoi International School.

“I am a member of the Senior Leadership Team and I am committed to (Oberoi) and fulfilling the promises that I have made to people at this school,” she said in a Monday e-mail. “I feel it would not be ethical to break my contract at (Oberoi) as I have made a commitment to the school, teachers, students and community.”

Crofton, a 2001 graduate of Bowdoin College, is head of secondary school at Oberoi, where she oversees students in grades 6-12. 

According to the school’s website, its goal is to provide “a rigorous academic program that includes experiential opportunities, a pastoral program that teaches life skills and supports social development,” as well as physical well-being.

“I feel that I have a lot to share with people at BHS,” Crofton said, “but also looking forward to learning from others and working with a solid team of educators.”

“As for working in a high school setting – yes, I have worked in several high schools,” she continued, “and although there are a number of similarities between the schools where I have worked – I have always learned something. I expect the same will be true in Brunswick.”

Her previous positions include director of senior school administration at Branksome Hall, an independent girls’ school in Ontario, Canada; and assistant academic dean at Leysin American School in Leysin, Switzerland.

Crofton, a dual citizen of the U.S. and Canada, said she is excited to return to Maine, where some of her family lives – including her mother, who works as a librarian at Brunswick Junior High School.

“As a Bowdoin graduate and a Maine resident I feel a close connection to Brunswick and the community,” she said. “When I learned of the opening I felt that this would be a good fit professionally and personally.”

Bowdoin College spokesman Scott Hood said the college is proud of graduates like Crofton, “who serve the common good as educators around the world.”

“We are delighted to learn Shanna is returning to Brunswick,” he continued. “Brunswick High School offers a terrific education and valuable opportunities for young people, including the daughters and sons of many Bowdoin faculty and staff.”

Perzanoski said the School Board will have to hire an interim principal for the spring semester at a Nov. 13 meeting, because current interim Principal Donna Borowick is scheduled to finish at the end of November.

The search for a new principal began in August, three months after former Principal Art Abelmann resigned abruptly before his two-year contract expired, following a similar departure at a school in Colorado.

Before Crofton was hired, an online community survey asking residents what they wanted in a new principal was published in August. After receiving 15 applications, five candidates were interviewed, and three met with members of the school community.

Sun Media Wire contributed to this report. Dylan Martin can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 100 or Follow him on Twitter: @DylanLJMartin.

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Shanna Crofton