NEWBURY — Newbury Elementary School Principal Michael Tracy is leaving the post he has held for three years at the end of the school year to become a middle school principal in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.

Tracy said on Thursday that he was excited for the opportunity to join the Cape Elizabeth team of educators in a school district that he describes as “a perfect fit.” Still, he takes with him special memories of Newbury.

“I’ve enjoyed my time here immensely and will always think fondly of serving the school and district that I also attended as a student. I wish everyone at Newbury Elementary and the Triton public schools continued success with my sincere gratitude for all of the investment and support from this amazing community,” he said.

Tracy’s ties to Newbury are strong. Not only did he attend elementary school here, but he also began his professional career as founder and administrator of a recreational day camp in town in 1992. He was named principal of Newbury Elementary in 2010.

During his tenure, Tracy led the charge in establishing a data-driven dialogue in the school with particular emphasis on literacy, mathematics and MCAS data. He built a system that incorporated intervention blocks into the master schedule and implemented a new procedure for educator evaluations.

Tracy received a bachelor’s degree in literature from Colby College. He also holds a master’s in educational administration from Lesley College and a Doctor of Education in educational administration and leadership from Boston College.

Triton Regional School District Superintendent Christopher Farmer called Tracy “an exceptional, student-centered instructional leader” who has made significant contributions to Triton.

Dina Sullivan, chairwoman of Triton’s Regional School Committee, agreed, saying, “Dr. Tracy was an excellent educational leader for Newbury Elementary and he will be missed.”

Farmer this week outlined for his school board the protocol he intends to follow in filling the open position.

Step one will be to create a job description and advertise the job. Hard copy applications will be required. He then will ask the School Council to identify no more than six parents and six staff to participate on interview panels. Farmer will also create a panel of his administrators.

The three panels will review Farmer’s job description and discuss with him the qualities and experience level the position requires. Parents, staff, and administrator panels will meet separately to review the applications, and then decide jointly which candidates — no more than 9 in total — will be brought in for a series of 45 minute interviews, one with each panel.

Once the interview teams agree on finalists, the superintendent will conduct reference checks. A panel made up of two representatives from each of the initial interview panels — plus the superintendent — will conduct the final 60-minute interviews.

Newbury Elementary School has about 600 students and 85 staff members.

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