BY PAUL LEIGHTON
---- — BEVERLY — Six months after getting a raise and a contract extension, Superintendent Marie Galinski could be leaving for a new job.
Galinski was named one of three finalists for superintendent of the Groton-Dunstable Regional School District on Wednesday night. She is scheduled to be interviewed by the district’s School Committee on Tuesday.
Beverly School Committee President Maria Decker said she was “surprised” when Galinski informed the School Committee before the holiday break that she was an applicant for the job in Groton.
The School Committee gave Galinski a $6,000 raise last June, boosting her salary to $151,000. Decker said Galinski then asked for a contract extension over the summer, and the committee agreed to a one-year extension to June 2014.
“At the time, she had indicated she was likely going to retire (at the end of the contract),” Decker said. “That was our understanding.”
Galinski said she was considering retiring when her current contract expires in Beverly, but now thinks she might keep working beyond that.
“Now that I’ve made a decision that I’m probably going to work longer, I decided to take a look at other options because I’ve been here quite a number of years,” she said. “Groton-Dunstable is a completely different community. It’s a regional school district and a smaller community, so it offers some different challenges.”
Galinski, who lives in Andover, has been in Beverly since 2004, serving six years as assistant superintendent before being named to the top job in July 2010. She has worked as a school administrator in Worcester, an elementary school principal in Haverhill and in Andover, and a middle school English teacher in Lynnfield. She has a doctorate in administration and supervision from Northeastern University.
Galinski was one of 26 applicants for the Groton-Dunstable superintendent job, according to Groton-Dunstable School Committee member Jim Frey.
The other finalists are Mashpee Superintendent Ann Bradshaw and Maureen Ward, superintendent of the Franklin/Hill school district in New Hampshire.
The current Groton-Dunstable superintendent, who was appointed on a one-year interim basis, makes $157,000, Frey said. Groton-Dunstable is a regional school district with 2,600 students, about 2,000 fewer than Beverly.
Frey said the School Committee hopes to select a superintendent the week of Jan. 14.
Despite being surprised by Galinski’s decision to seek another job, Decker said she respects her decision.
“She’s been here nine years, and she’s done a lot of good in the city and the school district,” Decker said. “We’ve got some wonderful building superintendents and administrators, and we can continue all the great things we’re doing should she be selected. We’ve got 4,600 children in the Beverly public schools that are always in the forefront of my mind and the rest of the School Committee’s minds. The superintendent is doing what’s best for her, and we have to respect that.”
If Galinski does not get the job in Groton, she said she would stay in Beverly at least until the end of her contract in 2014.
“I may decide to stay here longer,” she said. “We’ll see what happens.”
Staff writer Paul Leighton can be reached at 978-338-2675 or firstname.lastname@example.org.