LONG LAKE - Mary Jo Dickerson has taken over as superintendent at Long Lake Central School for the 2009-10 school year. Born and raised in the Adirondack Park, Dickerson is no stranger to small towns and the small schools that accompany them.
Dickerson is a graduate of Elizabethtown-Lewis Central School and received both her B.S. and M.S. degrees from SUNY Plattsburgh in education.
She holds school administrator/supervisor and school district administrator certifications as well as being a certified coordinator of work based learning and a home economics instructor.
Dickerson garnished much of her teaching resume with BOCES programs in Mineville and Saratoga Springs. She served for three years as building principal at CEWW BOCES in Mineville and for four years each as both coordinator of work based learning and in early childhood education as well as one year in an administrative fellowship at WSWHE BOCES in Saratoga Springs.
She taught for 12 years at Warrensburg Central School and served as regional summer school principal at North Warren Central School.
Dickerson and her husband currently reside in Stony Creek, while she rents in Long Lake during the week. They have three grown children and are looking to buy a home in Long Lake.
"I love children," said Dickerson. She comes to Long Lake prepared with goals that serve to benefit the core of any school system; its children.
"I have experience working in four different schools and communities and never have I been met with such true commitment to the youth," she said.
She hopes to increase communication between the school and community of Long Lake. In any small town, there is a fine line between the community and the school. Dickerson acknowledges that it takes a collaborate effort between both to keep one another successful.
She also hopes to increase the level of interactive technology at Long Lake in order to give students exposure to alternate educational opportunities and enhance learning.
Reading Program Initiatives are already taking effect at Long Lake per Dickerson's request. Teachers and administrators are working collaboratively to improve their testing methods, evaluate their reading program and make any necessary improvements.
Dickerson met with the Board of Education at the beginning of September to present her reading initiative and changes are already being made to the k-6 curriculum.
Overall, Dickerson hopes to draw to the surface and emphasize the strengths of Long Lake Central. She is deeply invested in the success of small Adirondack schools and truly believes that they offer "quality, individual education to students," she said.
Dickerson even asserts that small towns provide a perfect canvas for effective education and most importantly, the success of students.
"I hope to use my education leadership and experience to ensure that educational success is attained among both the students and the community," said Dickerson.
In addition to a new superintendent, Long Lake also welcomes three new teachers. Carey Pooler took over first grade from Mary Hall, who retired last year after 34 years of service to LLCS. Genny Flieshman is the new 7-12 math teacher and Bob Reynolds was hired at 7-12 social studies.