The Examiner

Two Principals Retiring This Year From Mt. Pleasant Schools

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. Hawthorne Elementary School Principal Jerry Schulman will be retiring when the current school year ends.
. Hawthorne Elementary School Principal Jerry Schulman will be retiring when the current school year ends.

Two Mount Pleasant School District principals have announced they are retiring at the end of the current academic year.

Stepping down from their posts will be Hawthorne Elementary School Principal Jerry Schulman and Westlake Middle School Principal Dr. Robert Hendrickson

Schulman said there was “a number of factors” that came together to influence his decision.

“My family especially and it was just that time,” he said.

Schulman, who has spent 35 years in education, said it was “a tough decision.”

“There are a lot of family things that I’d like to get involved in,” he said, adding that he now may now have time for different pursuits.

“I’m proud that I was able to start off as the assistant principal at Westlake High School for eight years, become the principal of Westlake Middle School for 12 years and now four years at Hawthorne Elementary School,” Schulman said. “So I was able to be an administrator in three out of the four buildings in the district. I think that’s kind of special for me.”

Hendrickson said he knew it was time to retire.

“I wanted to go out when I was healthy, happy,” Hendrickson said.

He said he would miss the “daily interaction with students.”

Accomplishments at the middle school during Hendrickson’s service include offering more Regents courses and introducing world languages for sixth-graders. Hendrickson stressed that staff was instrumental in the achievements made during his stay at the school.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Susan Guiney said Schulman and Hendrickson had made significant contributions to Mount Pleasant.

“I don’t think anybody has ever seen Jerry Schulman without a smile on his face,” Guiney said. “He bleeds Westlake blue and we’re going to miss him very, very much. He’s brought a wonderful energy to the school at Hawthorne for the teachers, for our parents, for our youngest learners.”

“Dr. Hendrickson, in terms of longevity in the district, he’s the newcomer, but he’s been here four years,” she added. “During that time he’s brought a very strong academic foundation with him to the middle school.”

During Hendrickson’s tenure, instructional time in math and English language arts has increased and all eighth-graders now take an advanced science course.

“Bob has a wonderful wit and sense of humor which everyone appreciates very much. (He is) a very kind and compassionate man,” Guiney said. “He’ll be greatly missed by our staff, our teachers and our parents. The kids know that he knows what it’s like to be a middle schooler and they appreciate that.”

Their retirements will leave significant holes in the district’s administrative team. Guiney said officials are seeking to replace both principals in time for September. Typically the district first posts its openings internally before extending the search outside the district to gauge the interest and qualifications of other candidates, she said.

Community stakeholders, including teachers and parents, will be involved in the search, Guiney added.

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