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Shawsheen Tech School Committee Wants Broadrick As Next Superintendent

Jul 22, 2015 05:32AM ● By Robert Hayes

(Editor's note: This story was originally published on the Wilmington Apple.)

BILLERICA, MA — The Shawsheen Tech School Committee Meeting voted unanimously tonight to enter into contract negotiations with Timothy Broadrick, the school’s Director of Technical Programs, to become the school’s next Superintendent.

The decision was reached after interviewing Broadrick and two other finalists — the Tech’s Assistant Superintendent Carissa Karakedos and Tech Social Studies Teacher Jessica Cook — earlier in the evening.

The Resume

  • Broadrick has worked at the Tech for the past 10 years.
  • Broadrick currently serves as the Director of Technical Programs, leading the day-to-day operations of 11 technical programs for the past two years.
  • Prior to his time as an administrator, Broadrick was a Graphic Arts Instructor at the Tech from 2004 to 2013, including in the role as the Department’s Lead Teacher from 2009 to 2013.
  • Broadrick served as the Boys’ and Girls’ Cross Country Head Coach (2006-2012) and Spring Track Head Coach (2013), attaining an overall league record of 116-16, with six league championships, five undefeated seasons, and five “Coach of the Year” awards.
  • Broadrick received a bachelor of arts from the University of New Hampshire (1992); a Master of Education in Organization Leadership from Endicott College (2011), the Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators’ Association Leadership License (2010-2011); and a leadership certificate from the Massachusetts Association of Vocational Administrators (2013-2014).
  • Prior to entering the education field, Broadrick acquired a great deal of business management experience, including in roles as the Vice President of Operations for Digital Direct in Portsmouth, NH and Director of Operations for Touchmark, Inc. in Dorchester.

The Interview

  • The recent accomplishments that Broadrick was most proud of were technology-based. He partnered with the IT Director in developing a District Technology Plan that addressed cloud computing and mobile devices. He excepts a mobile device pilot program to begin in early 2016, potentially leading to a 1:1 (1 mobile device for every 1 student) learning environment. He’s proud of helping to redefine the school’s vision for technology, from its recent embrace of social media as a communication tool to the upcoming implementation of Microsoft Office 365.
  • Broadrick emphasized that while he only has a background as a vocational/technical teacher and not as an academic teacher, he is “not afraid of or intimated” by having to manage both aspects of the school.
  • Broadrick’s vision for a 21st century technical vocational education is to strike the right balance between technical programs and vocational programs. “We most remain true to our roots, be both vocational AND technical, while developing opportunities in high-tech fields.” Broadrick noted there will certainly be growth in the technical-side (e.g., robotics, engineering) as the school’s offerings must continue to reflect the realities of the job market and trends in labor demand.
  • Broadrick stressed the need to effectively communicate with all constituencies. He noted that he currently spends portions of day walking around the building and speaking with staff and other administrators. It’s become a habit. And by communicating frequently and meaningfully, Broadrick said he’s able to address small issues before they turn into bigger ones.
  • Broadrick detailed his experience with the school’s budget, noting the district’s current “decentralized” budgeting process is “brilliant,” as it allows for each department of fundamentally understand their capital and operational budgets. “This is not typical in most districts.”

[NOTE: Broadrick was the first candidate interviewed and I, unfortunately, missed approximately 20 minutes of it.]

The Vote

  • After the three 45-minute interviews, Wilmington’s longtime representatives to the School Committee – James Gillis and Robert Peterson – both came out strong in support of Broadrick.
  • Peterson, who chaired the Search Committee, said that Broadrick is simply “the best candidate for this job as this time.” Peterson called Broadrick the most “well-rounded” candidate and noted he was, by far, the most polished and prepared speaker among the finalists.
  • “Broadrick has the edge,” said Gillis. “The next Superintendent needs to be able to carry the flag [from Charlie Lyons] and Mr. Broadrick is best to do that.” Gillis was the first to speak in support of Broadrick, setting the tone, and made the initial motion to bring forth his candidacy.
  • The final vote was unanimous, 10-0, in favor of Broadrick. There was some early support for Carissa Karakedos, the school’s Assistant Superintendent. Patricia Meuse, of Tewksbury, initially voted for her, but supported Broadrick in the final vote. Several other members expressed some level of support for Karakedos during the discussion, but Broadrick received 9 of the 10 — and ultimately — 10 of the 10 votes.

All Three Finalists Praised

  • Wilmington’s James Gillis said the committee was “blessed to have three outstanding candidates with institutional knowledge and a love of the school.” Wilmington’s Robert Peterson, and the rest of the committee, seemed to agree.
  • Peterson called finalist Jessica Cook a “rising star,” but felt she just lacked the necessary high school administration experience. He and several colleagues expressed their belief that it it is only a matter of time before she becomes a superintendent somewhere.

What’s Next?

  • The School Committee’s personnel subcommittee will now meet with Broadrick to negotiate a contract and report back to the full School Committee at their next regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, August 25, when, presumably, a vote will be taken to approve the contract.
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