Beachwood Votes to Hire Gearity Principal
Sherry Miller will lead Hilltop Elementary School next year, says goodbye to Gearity Professional Development School families.
The vote was 4-0. One member, Mitchel Luxenburg, was absent.
"She is a proven leader in the areas of curriculum, professional development, supervision and community relations," Beachwood Schools Superintendent Rich Markwardt wrote in a memo to the community this morning.
Miller will replace Michael Molnar, who announced last month that he had accepted a job in Lorain County.
Miller had worked at Gearity since 2004.
"While it is not easy for me to leave Gearity, I leave knowing that we have accomplished a great deal together," Miller wrote in the letter to families. "I am extremely proud of our strong and caring family, devoted to our students. We are lucky to have dedicated teachers who are prepared to successfully implement a STEM/Discovery pathway this fall."
Dori Nelson-Hollis, whose child attends Gearity, said Miller will be missed.
"Sherry was a tremendous principal who worked tirelessly to educate our children and build our school community. Our kids loved her and she loved them. Many people ask about the family feeling at Gearity and while all the teachers, families and staff have helped to build our school community, Sherry has led the charge over the last 7 years," Nelson-Hollis wrote in an email. "We are grateful and thankful for all she has done for our children and our community."
Gearity is one of three schools slated to close under the Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District's proposed facilities master plan. Parents, University Heights Mayor Susan Infeld and others protested the decision, noting that the school is the only elementary school in University Heights.
Nelson-Hollis wonders if that was a factor in Miller's decision.
"I cannot comment on if she left due to the current district administration or facilities plans, but most people I have spoken to have said they understand why she would want to leave," Nelson-Hollis said. "I think she has been put in a very difficult position over the last six months, and while she always supported the district, it seemed as if lately her spirit was a bit battered and bruised."
Miller did not immediately return e-mails for comment.
Beachwood Patch local editor Nikki Ferrell contributed to this article.