Editorial: Providing Public Understanding

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While there is little doubt current Bridgehampton Superintendent Dr. Lois Favre and the Bridgehampton School Board have very good reasons to pursue state approval to appoint Robert Hauser, the district’s current assistant superintendent of finance and facilities, to replace Dr. Favre at the helm of the Bridgehampton School when she retires, greater public conversation may have benefited this community.

Mr. Hauser, who has served in the district for seven years, has been tapped by the board to replace Dr. Favre despite not having state certification to take that position. Mike Miller, the school’s physical education, health and athletic director, is poised to be named principal in this new administration — Dr. Favre served both roles in Bridgehampton with state approval.

Mr. Hauser has been an excellent business administrator and facilities manager, offering detailed analysis in public of the many projects the district has attempted to tackle, including, most recently, an approved $25 million bond project to expand the school. In her tenure, Dr. Favre proved to be an inspired choice for superintendent, taking the work of former superintendent Dr. Dianne Youngblood and raising the profile of the Bridgehampton School, expanding its curriculum, and solidifying the sense of school community that makes Bridgehampton so special.

Communities here can be passionate about their school leaders, with conversation around superintendent searches in Springs and Shelter Island leading those districts to use search firms to find new administrators. When deciding to move forward with a superintendent that isn’t certified — and as the district is about to embark on a tremendous project under new leadership — it would have been helpful if a larger, more transparent conversation about the role of administration, and the changes anticipated in Bridgehampton, was had with the community at large.

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