Catskill school board selects new superintendent


CATSKILL, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Catskill Central School District Board of Education selected Melissa A. Barrow to be its next superintendent of schools, effective February 12. Barrow was appointed by the Board at its January 11 meeting.

“I am honored and excited to be selected as the next superintendent of the Catskill Central School District,” said Barrow. “I look forward to working with the Board, staff, and families to continue to build upon the strengths of the District while creating new opportunities for student success.”

Barrow comes to Catskill from the East Ramapo Central School District in Rockland County, where she has served since 2013 in various positions. Most recently, she held the position of assistant superintendent of student programs, assessment, and evaluation. In this role, she led a team of 140 teachers, two directors, and five central office staff who focus on the education and socio-emotional needs of over 5,000 multilingual learners.

Within the last five years, Barrow has increased the graduation rate of English language learners by 26% and recently established a High School Newcomer Academy to support newly arrived students as they transition to high school.

She also served as an instructional supervisor for the Hudson Valley Regional Bilingual Education Resource Network at New Paltz. Her teaching career began in the Middletown City School District, where she taught English to speakers of other languages.

She has a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and Black and Puerto Rican Studies from CUNY Hunter College and a master’s degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from SUNY New Paltz. She is bilingual and bi-literate in English and Spanish.

“Melissa Barrow stood out among a strong pool of candidates,” said Board President Deborah Johnson. “Her skills, experiences, and enthusiasm make her the right person to lead Catskill CSD. The Board looks forward to working with Melissa.”

The Board received a total of 26 applications for the superintendent position. A stakeholder group consisting of 12 parents, staff, and community members assisted the Board in interviewing four semi-finalists. “We would like to thank our parents, staff, students, and community members for their input and feedback throughout the search process,” said Johnson.

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