RSU 14's Prince will retire with 'great memories'

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WINDHAM — After 16 years in the position and a 39-year career in education, RSU 14 Superintendent Sandy Prince will “be greatly missed” when he retires June 30.

Prince said education is “one of the most rewarding fields that I have seen.”

“I truly think we make a difference on behalf of children. It’s so encouraging to see the growth that students make and the difference they can make on society,” he said. 

He struggled with the decision to retire and “put a lot of thought and time into it.”

“But I feel good about it,” he said, and he’s looking forward to “new opportunities.”

He announced his retirement last week.

Prince plans to take some time off but would like to find a new way to occupy his time, perhaps through volunteering. 

The Windham-Raymond School Board will select Prince’s replacement, although a timeline for the process has not yet been set.

School Board Chair Janis Cummings said she and vice chair Kate Brix will meet with Steve Bailey of the Maine School Management Association Feb. 22 “to talk about what the process is, how we go about it, the nuts and bolts of the search process.”

She hopes to have a replacement for Prince by the time he leaves in June and said the district received a strong crop of applicants when it filled the assistant superintendent position last year.

“We need it to be a short process because we need to get somebody in, but we want it to be a thorough process also,” she said. 

“We’re going to miss Sandy Prince,” she added. “He is a fantastic administrator. He will be greatly missed.”

Prince said in a letter to the community that he hopes “the district will have ample time to recruit and select the best candidate to lead the district into the future.”

He said he will miss many components of the job and working with the students, families and educators. 

“It’s like a family. It’s a job, but it goes deeper than that. I just love to see the students and how they’re shining,” he said. 

Leaving the position “will be an adjustment,” he said. 

“I’ve just been very privileged and honored to be in such a great school system. I’ll leave with great memories.”

Prince’s career spans a variety of school districts and municipalities. He attended the University of Maine at Farmington for elementary education and special education, then earned a master’s degree in education at the University of Southern Maine, where he specialized in School Leadership.

He began teaching in Windham in 1982 as the school’s first full-time kindergarten special education teacher. In 1986, he became director of special education services in Gorham. While there, he also filled the role of principal for an elementary school and kindergarten center and acted as interim middle school principal for three years. 

In 2002, he became principal at Lyseth Elementary in Portland and then assistant director of educational planning for the Portland School Department. He returned to Windham in 2003 as superintendent.

Jane Vaughan can be reached at 780-9103 or at jvaughan@keepmecurrent.com. 

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