Riverhead School District Superintendent Diane Scricca has
asked the school board for a waiver that would allow her to
retire at the end of June, school board member Ann
Cotten-DeGrasse told the News-Review.
Ms. Cotten-DeGrasse also said a majority of the seven-member
board is looking to promote someone in-house to the
superintendent position without seeking other candidates, a
move that she opposes.
Reached Monday, Dr. Scricca said she is considering
retiring, but added that “I have not put in any retirement
Dr. Scricca was hired in May 2007 and will complete her third year as superintendent of the large district at the end of
Dr. Scricca had asked the school board to grant a waiver to a
clause in her contract that requires six months notice before
retiring, Ms. Cotten-DeGrasse said.
The superintendent would not comment on the waiver issue.
“I’m not going to speak to that,” she said.
“This is personal business and Ms. Cotten-DeGrasse should
not be speaking to the paper about personnel
Ms. Cotten-DeGrasse said Dr. Scricca asked to retire either June 30
or Aug. 31 and the board has informally agreed on the June 30
date since that mark’s the school year’s end.
School board members were told of Dr. Scricca’s intent by
phone about a week ago, Ms. Cotten-Degrasse said, adding that the board
then met in executive session last Thursday to discuss issues
surrounding the potential retirement.
Ms. Cotten-DeGrasse said she could not disclose the name of Dr.
Scricca’s potential replacement because the matter was
discussed in executive session, which is not open to the
But, she said, she’s going public with the news of the
retirement because several residents had already asked her
about it, and because she doesn’t think it’s an
issue that should be kept from the public.
“People in the community have called me and had all the
particulars already, so somebody’s talking,” Ms.
Hiring a new superintendent without advertising the position is
something Ms. Cotten-DeGrasse also opposes, although she
acknowledges that it is not required by law.
“I think the community is already mad at us because they
feel we weren’t really listening to them on the bond
issue, and some of the comments by board members afterward
further inflamed them,” Ms. Cotten-Degrasse said, citing a
recently defeated schools expansion plan. “My thought on
this is, you once again seem to be bypassing the whole
community by not advertising the position.”
Ms. Cotten-DeGrasse is a former Riverhead teacher and former
president of the Riverhead teachers’ union, which has
been at odds with Dr. Scricca over many issues since her