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Pottsgrove Hires Interim Pupil Services Leader

EDITOR’S NOTE: The appointment of Dr. Sylvia Sanfillipo-Cohn as “acting director of pupil services,” and an accompanying employment contract effective Aug. 25 (2014), was approved unanimously and without comment during Tuesday’s (Aug. 12) Pottsgrove Board of School Directors’ meeting.

POTTSTOWN PA – Dr. Sylvia Sanfillipo-Cohn, a retired administrator who has served in a variety of special education roles at Montgomery County schools, has been named by the Pottsgrove School District as its interim director of pupil services, it announced Tuesday morning (Aug. 12, 2014).

She temporarily succeeds Ann Myers, who held that position for many years and retired in June. Sanfillipo-Cohn will work at an hourly rate of $80, the district said, or $3,200 per 40-hour week.

She is not Pottsgrove’s initial choice for the position. On June 30, it proclaimed Regina Carpenter, a supervisor of special education at the Bucks County Intermediate Unit, would follow Myers in the job.

“After careful consideration, however, Ms. Carpenter decided to remain at the Bucks County Intermediate Unit,” Pottsgrove Director of Technology and Communications Michael Wagman said in a press release. “We wish her continued success in that position,” he added, and said the district would “continue the search to find the best possible candidate to fill this very critical administrative role.”

Appointment of Sanfillipo-Cohn also means the final interim position held by Dr. Barbara Burke-Stevenson, whose services filled a roughly two-month gap since Myers’ departure, also will expire. In all, Burke-Stevenson – also retired – has been counted on by Pottsgrove for more than a year in high-profile positions to lend her expertise as a former superintendent and educator.

Burke-Stevenson began at Pottsgrove in March 2013 as interim director of education to succeed Dr. Todd Davies, who took an assistant superintendent’s job in Exeter PA. His full-time successor, Daniel Vorhis, was hired in April 2014. Burke-Stevenson then picked up on July 1 where Myers left off, and was to remain until mid-September when Carpenter’s arrival was anticipated.

More may await Burke-Stevenson elsewhere, Wagman indicated. She “will begin a new chapter in her long and successful career, serving teachers and students in a number of school districts in the Philadelphia region,” his press release stated.

Sanfillipo-Cohn has had what the release called “a long and successful career as a principal in a private special needs school, assistant pupil services director at Lower Merion School District, and from 1996 until her retirement in 2012 served as director of pupil services and special education at Springfield Township School District.

Since retirement, she served in the Upper Merion School District as an interim director of pupil services, according to the release.


Related (to the Pottsgrove Board of School Directors’ Aug. 12 meeting):

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