Old Bridge will keep Cittadino in charge of school disrict

Staff Writer

OLD BRIDGE — Superintendent of Schools David Cittadino will remain at the helm of the Old Bridge School District.

The Board of Education at its Dec. 15 meeting conducted the required annual summary conference with the superintendent and voted to reappoint him as superintendent beyond June 30, 2016, subject to the negotiation of a mutually acceptable contract.

Cittadino waived his privacy rights for the board to discuss its review in a public forum of his performance during 2014-15.

The board’s tardiness on the required annual summary conference and notifying Cittadino whether or not they would reappoint him caused a big uproar at the meeting. Staff members, students, alumni and parents came to the podium to praise Cittadino’s commitment to the district.

In 2013, after a lengthy interview process, Cittadino was appointed as superintendent with a three-year contract that expires in June 2016, with a salary of $170,000 for the first year, followed by $171,700 and $174,276 in the second and third years, respectively, plus a $2,500 high school stipend each year.

Cittadino has a Bachelor of Arts degree in elementary education and a Master of Arts in school administration from Kean University. He began his career as a sixth-grade teacher at Theodore Roosevelt Middle School in Elizabeth in 1997. He was promoted to school disciplinarian in 2003 and worked in that capacity for two years.

In January 2006, Cittadino joined the Old Bridge School District as vice principal of Jonas Salk Middle School. Six months later, he was promoted to principal and held that post until June 2011, when he became principal of Old Bridge High School.

In June 2012, he became assistant superintendent for human resources.

Cittadino said he was “deeply humbled” by the kind words of his peers as well as from current and former students.

He said the success of the Old Bridge School District is not due to him, but everyone in the community and the teachers of the district, whose contract was ratified at the meeting.

Board members acknowledged that they did drop the ball on the time-frame of the review and said Cittadino’s dedication to the district speaks for itself.

Board Vice President Kevin Borsilli said Cittadino deserves a fair evaluation and said the superintendent has many positive qualities including being approachable. He said he would like to see a better long-term plan for the district.

Board member Nancy Mongon, who chairs the negotiations committee, said she was voting in favor of reappointing Cittadino.

“It is not in our best interest of the committee to conduct another superintendent search,” she said, adding the pool of candidates would not come close to what Cittadino has provided for the district.

Negotiations for Cittadino’s contract will begin in February and should be completed by July 1, according to Lori Luicci, public relations coordinator for the Old Bridge School District.