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February 20, 2013

Essex Aggie superintendent steps aside

DANVERS — The superintendent of Essex Agricultural and Technical High School is resigning effective April 1 to take a job with the Boston Public Schools.

The news of Roger Bourgeois’s exit comes more than one year before Essex Aggie is set to merge with North Shore Technical High School and just eight months into a two-year contract he signed intending to steer the school right up to the transition.

Bourgeois, who has worked at Essex Aggie since 2007, has been hired for a newly-created position in the Boston Public Schools: assistant superintendent for technical/vocational network.

”This is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” said Bourgeois. “(Essex Aggie) has been a great school to work at. It was a very difficult decision to make ... I have mixed emotions.”

Essex Aggie’s upcoming merger influenced Bourgeois to begin looking for other positions, he said Tuesday.

”If Essex Aggie wasn’t merging, I wouldn’t be leaving,” he said. “It was going to be an issue, (having) two superintendents vying for one (job at the new, merged school). Less than a year and a half from now, Essex Aggie’s going to dissolve.”

”... As difficult as it is to leave Essex Aggie, this is just something that felt like it was the right place, the right time to move on.”

Essex Aggie’s Board of Trustees voted unanimously last week to accept Bourgeois’ resignation.

The board’s personnel subcommittee will meet next week and will likely recommend an interim superintendent to fill out the remainder of the school year, said Chairman Joseph Edwards. Essex Aggie’s principal, Joy White, is licensed to work as a superintendent, Edwards said.

”My feeling is that she (White) will be chosen (as interim),” said Edwards. “I don’t think there will be an issue at all with her taking over, if she chooses to do so.”

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