Principals vie for top district job

FONDA-The Fonda-Fultonville Central School Board of Education will be extending Interim Superintendent Ray Colucciello’s contract as they decide which FFCS principal will be hired as the district’s next superintendent.

According to a news release Thursday, the FFCS Board of Education will be extending Colucciello’s contract beyond June 30 while they decide between Thomas Ciaccio, current FFCS elementary principal, and David Halloran, current FFCS high school principal, the two remaining candidates for the position.

Colucciello said the length of the extension has not yet been determined, but he expects a decision before June 30.

Colucciello said the board narrowed it down to the pair after going through over 40 applicants. Colucciello said the board decided to find a superintendent internally after reviewing the candidates, finding Ciaccio and Halloran were as experienced and qualified as candidates from other districts.

“Why don’t we go with the people with the experience [we know],” Colucciello said.

A community committee will be interviewing both candidates and will give the Board of Education their input. Colucciello said the committee will be made up of faculty, students, union representatives and other members of the community.

The committee will review the strengths and weaknesses of Ciaccio and Halloran before presenting them to the board. Colucciello stressed the committee would not be making a recommendation, but the board will listen to their findings.

Colucciello said he did not know when the decision would be made.

“Certainly before the close of the school year, so they can inform the faculty,” Colucciello said.

The Board of Education will then select one of the two. The selected candidate will be appointed to the position of associate superintendent/principal and remain in their current position, while being mentored by Dr. Colucciello.

“The board feels that the succession plan will allow Ray to continue on with important projects underway, while mentoring one of our two current administrators,” Tim Wendell, president of the Board of Education, stated in a news release.

The new superintendent will receive a yearly salary between $120,000 and $140,000. Colucciello earns $137,500 a year, without benefits.

Neither Ciaccio or Halloran could be reached for comment.