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Yarmouth finds new school chief in York County

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Yarmouth finds new school chief in York County

YARMOUTH — The School Committee has selected Andrew Dolloff, superintendent of Regional School Unit 21, to become Yarmouth's superintendent of schools, effective July 1.

Dolloff was principal of Scarborough High School and later assistant superintendent of the Scarborough School Department. He joined RSU 21, which includes the York County towns of Kennebunk, Arundel and Kennebunkport, in 2009, and previously taught chemistry at Lewiston and Dirigo high schools.

“It's a district that supports education and has a great reputation all-around," Dolloff said of Yarmouth. "There are a great number of professionals in the Yarmouth school department with whom I'm familiar as colleagues or on a personal level. Their encouragement certainly piqued my interest. ... On the personal side, I really have a tremendous amount of family history in that area.”

The School Committee, which voted to hire Dolloff on Jan. 30, will introduce him to the public at its Feb. 13 meeting at the Log Cabin on Main Street.

"Andrew is a topnotch superintendent, well-known in Maine's educational community," School Committee Chairman David Ray said in a statement. "He meets our leadership profile to a T and brings a wealth of experience and skill to the job. We are looking forward to working with Andrew to continue Yarmouth's commitment to providing the highest quality public education for our students."

Yarmouth native Ronald Barker, who served as the district's interim superintendent for much of last year, led the search for a new head administrator. He worked with a 13-member search committee of teachers, administrators, residents and more on a national search to fill the position. Future Management Systems, a headhunter firm based in Beverly, Mass., was also contracted to aid in the search.

Dolloff is currently enrolled in a doctoral program at the Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Service at the University of Southern Maine. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Maine at Farmington and a master's degree from the University of Southern Maine.

During Dolloff's tenure as the superintendent of RSU 21, Kennebunkport and Arundel went through a withdrawal referendum process, but both communities elected to remain in the RSU. While he admitted he would not miss the challenges associated with the RSU model, Dolloff said that heading a one-town district wouldn't necessarily be any easier.

"Certainly, the RSUs that were formed as a result of the consolidation law in this round have faced some very intense decisions that don't present themselves in a single municipality," he said. "So, although I will look forward to leaving those discussions behind, I'm sure there will be just as passionate discussion as we move forward in Yarmouth. Funding isn't becoming any easier, and accountability for schools is becoming greater, so there will be challenges for anybody."

Dolloff will succeed William Michaud, who has served as interim superintendent since August 2013. Barker held the interim superintendent position from December 2012 to August 2013.

Barker replaced Judy Paolucci, who served 2 1/2 years as superintendent before leaving to become superintendent of Leicester Public Schools in Massachusetts.

Brendan Twist can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or btwist@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @brendantwist.