Chebeague, Long Island school chief resigns

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CHEBEAGUE ISLAND — The School Department is looking for a new part-time superintendent and principal after Alton Hadley announced his resignation.

Hadley held both positions, and a search committee is looking for someone new to follow suit. The part-time position requires being at the school two days a week; the deadline to apply is Feb. 6.

“Anyone who’s interested in working in a great educational environment, who’s either retired or doesn’t need to work as much, should consider working at an island school,” Hadley said Tuesday.

Hadley, who has worked in education for 52 years, has been the superintendent and principal of the Chebeague Island School since 2007, when the island became its own town. He is also resigning from a one-day-a-week job as superintendent of the Long Island School.

Both resignations take effect June 30.

Hadley, a Scarborough resident, retired 15 years ago after working as a teacher and superintendent in various Maine and New Hampshire towns. He decided to work part-time at island schools after realizing he wasn’t quite ready to stop working.

“For a retired person looking for part-time work, you couldn’t ask for a better environment,” Hadley said.

He said Chebeague Island has given him the chance to work closely with children because the school is so small. Chebeague Island School, which is pre-kindergarten through fifth grade, has 33 students enrolled this year.

Hadley said even though the school is small, it’s one of the most important things on the island.

“With a small island community, the school is the heart and soul of the community,” he said. “It’s part of the fabric of the community.”

Hadley said this has made working on Chebeague Island very rewarding. He said everyone on the island is invested in the school.

“Education is important to the community, not just to kids and parents, but to the community as a whole,” he said.

Hadley said the students are very involved in the community and that he has enjoyed seeing the new and different things they do all the time.

He said the students often visit nursing homes, and spend a lot of time learning outside.

“All island schools are very hands-on and place-based learning,” Hadley said. “They do a lot with the ocean and with the critters in the ocean.”

Hadley said the person who replaces him at Chebeague Island School will have to understand the needs of the students and teachers. He said working on an island school is much different than working with a large student body and staff.

“It takes someone who is flexible and not too full of themselves,” Hadley said. “The important thing is that this is their school system.”

He said the new superintendent/principal needs to know the value Chebeague Island places on education.

“Education is their top priority,” Hadley said.

Hadley said he will go into full-time retirement and leave both the Chebeague Island and Long Island schools on June 30. He said he plans to relax and play golf.

Kate Gardner can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or kgardner@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: @katevgardner.

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Scarborough resident Alton Hadley is resigning from school department jobs on Chebeague Island and Long Island.

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I'm a reporter for The Forecaster covering Freeport, Yarmouth, Chebeague Island, and Cape Elizabeth. I'm from a small town in NH no one's ever heard of. When not reporting, I can be found eating pasta and reading books, often at the same time.