The Newton School Committee had nothing but praise for superintendent David Fleishman during his first-year review Tuesday night.
“We think in your first year, you have been incredible and we can tell that you really enjoy It.” School Committee chairwoman Claire Sokoloff told Fleishman, who began the job in 2010. “It is clear to all of us, you are a class act.”
“You showed what Newton is all about before you even started and I think that is important, said Susan Rosenbaum,” a School Committee member from Ward 5. “You taught that technology is important, but prioritizing the importance of reading is really important.”
“We had very high expectations from you and I think you lived up to that in your first year,” said Jonathan Yeo, School Committee member from Ward 4. “I know you know there is a ways to go in some areas and you laid it out.” Some of the areas include investing in the schools and the classroom. “In terms of these areas, it shows you know exactly what to do.”
“The educational team building with the teachers has been amazing,” said Geoff Epstein, School Committee member from Ward 1. “The academic turn in the next few years is education in the digital age and I think our superintendent has moved us forward to that.”
“It has been a fantastic partnership since you have been here,” said Mayor Setti Warren. “In these difficult times you have made sure we are on track. I want to give you respect with your staff and the power you have given them.”
“Education is the bedrock of our community. The way you have implemented that has been fantastic,” he said.
Fleishman opened the review by stating his thoughts on his first year. “It’s a unique role. I look at it in three ways,” said Fleishman, mentioning the education, managerial, and political aspects of the job.
“We all have different ideas of what education is,” he said.
Fleishman said that to make more strides, he and his staff need to adopt new mandates, do research, hear different views, evaluate their priorities and ask what they will be five years from now.
He said his managerial tasks include hiring employees and managing the budget. Political tasks include building relationships with the teachers, his staff, the media, the students, and the parents.
“I enjoy it. I enjoy coming to work everyday,” he said.
Derek McLean can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.