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Exiting superintendent offers advice, support



Published: Tue, June 19, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



Dr. Louis C. Mastrian said he is leaving the district in good shape academically, physically and financially.

HERMITAGE, Pa. -- The departing superintendent of Hermitage School District advised the nine-member school board to "work as a committee of 10" with his successor to resolve future issues facing the district.

Dr. Louis C. Mastrian, who served as superintendent for eight years, attended his last official school board meeting Monday but didn't close the door behind him.

If the school board or staff need his assistance, don't hesitate to call him, he said in a statement at the end of the meeting.

Former principal: Mastrian thanked the board for giving him the opportunity to serve, and the administrators, faculty and staff for their support. He singled out former high school principal Dr. Kathleen Nogay for special attention.

Nogay served in that post for eight years, resigning in February to become assistant superintendent of the Slippery Rock Area School District.

Mastrian said she completed "an enormous task" before she left, arranging phasing schedules for work on the $24 million high school renovation and expansion project now under way, a job that went well beyond her normal work schedule.

Coincidentally,Nogay's husband, Walter, had taken the board to task moments earlier for ignoring his wife at this year's commencement.

She received calls from a number of seniors asking if she would be there, but the board didn't offer her an invitation. Nogay said he learned that some board members insisted that her name not be mentioned and that she not be invited.

Nogay said he found tickets to attend anyway.

Duane Piccirilli, board president, said no members of the board told commencement speakers not to mention the former principal's name, but Nogay said his information showed that wasn't correct.

No plans: Mastrian's contract wasn't renewed by the school board for next year. At 58, with 37 years in the educational system, he could retire, but he hasn't revealed his plans.

He offered best wishes to his successor, Karen Ionta, and other new administrators named by the board in dealing with issues and challenges that lie ahead.

His comments drew a standing ovation from the small audience, led by Ionta.

"I am going to call you," she added.




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