Mr. Winrow Returns To Mashpee As Assistant Principal Controversy Settles Out

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By: Elsa H. Partan
Published: 08/19/11

Mashpee High School is turning to its former principal to fill the role of interim assistant principal this fall.

Superintendent Ann M. Bradshaw said this week that Alan R. Winrow, who retired as high school principal in 2010 after two years on the job, will start work on Monday in the one-year interim position.

In a reshuffle of a previous hierarchy, Mr. Winrow will be reporting to Principal Jane A. Day, who used to report to him when she was assistant principal. Ms. Day was hired as principal after Mr. Winrow stepped down in 2010.

“Alan knows the staff and he knows many of the students,” Ms. Bradshaw wrote in an e-mail to the Enterprise. “He is familiar with policies and procedures, so he will be able to hit the ground running.”

The hiring process for an assistant principal has been marked by controversy. A longtime social studies and history teacher, Brian A. Hyde, applied for the job earlier this year after serving as interim assistant principal for one year. He was recommended to be hired by a screening committee, but was not ultimately hired for the position. Parents and other supporters wrote letters to the editor and turned out for a meeting with the Mashpee School Committee to voice disapproval of that result.

Ms. Bradshaw said Ms. Day selected the two top candidates in the last few weeks, but both took jobs in other school districts. Facing the prospect of having no assistant principal, Ms. Day thought of asking Mr. Winrow to return to Mashpee schools.

“He was still interested in our schools,” Ms. Bradshaw said in a phone interview on Wednesday. “We’ve seen him at games, and it was worth asking.”

Although Mr. Winrow formerly worked as a principal and was paid at that level, he will be paid the salary of an assistant principal for the next year, approximately $100,000, Ms. Bradshaw said.

Reached at his home, Mr. Hyde said he is “fine” with returning to the classroom this fall to teach social science, history, and psychology to juniors and seniors.

“Alan is a great guy, a great leader,” Mr. Hyde said. “Any role I can take in which I am contributing to kids’ education, I will do,” he said.

Nevertheless, he acknowledged that he was disappointed not to be taking the assistant principal job. “I thought I was an excellent fit,” he said.

School committee Chairman Kathy G. Stanley wrote in an e-mail to the Enterprise that she is pleased that Mr. Winrow will be filling the interim position.

“Mr. Winrow was an effective, respected, and experienced administrator while with us,” she wrote. “The students will be happy to see a familiar face when they return.”

Likewise, Scott P. McGee, a school committee member, said he welcomed Mr. Winrow back.

Mr. Winrow came to Mashpee schools in 2008 with more than 30 years of experience as an English teacher and school administrator, working in school districts in Boston, Canton, Malden, and South Yarmouth. From 1995 to 2000 he was the assistant principal at Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School. He served as the principal of Dedham High School from 2000 until he joined Mashpee Schools.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in English, master’s degrees in English and educational administration and, according to his résumé, “completed substantial work” toward a doctorate at Nova Southeastern University in Florida.

When he left Mashpee schools last year, Mr. Winrow said he was “exploring all kinds of alternatives,” and did not have another job lined up. Ms. Bradshaw said that she believed Mr. Winrow was not leaving a job to come back to Mashpee.

Mr. Winrow did not return a request for comment left at his Weymouth home.

Ms. Day was on vacation this week and was unavailable for comment.

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