The new Saco School Board has appointed an interim superintendent to lead the school department as it completes its withdrawal from Regional School Unit 23.

Michael Pulsifer, who currently is RSU 23’s assistant superintendent, was appointed Wednesday as interim superintendent for Saco. He is expected to lead the district for the next 18 months.

Saco residents voted in November to withdraw from RSU 23, the district it joined five years ago with Dayton and Old Orchard Beach. Dayton also voted to withdraw. Saco will officially become its own district on July 1.

Pulsifer was a principal in Old Orchard Beach schools for 21 years before moving to the RSU 23 central office five years ago. He has been assistant superintendent for the past two years. He will continue full-time with the RSU through the end of the school year.

Kevin Lafortune, chairman of the school board, said the board chose to appoint an interim superintendent now instead of immediately launching a time-consuming search for a more permanent candidate. He said Pulsifer will help guide the district as it develops its first budget and negotiates contracts.

Lafortune said he believes Pulsifer will help make the transition go more smoothly because he is already familiar with the city, students, staff and school buildings.

Pulsifer will receive a stipend for the part-time work he does for the district this spring. He also signed a one-year, $115,000 contract that begins July 1.

“It’s going to be a lot of work. It’s challenging, but it’s also going to be exciting,” Pulsifer said.

 

Gillian Graham can be contacted at 791-6315 or at:

ggraham@pressherald.com

Twitter: @grahamgillian