The Smithtown Central School District has chosen its replacement for the recently retired Mary Cahill, the assistant superintendent for instruction and administration, in Maria Rianna, the deputy superintendent of the Port Jefferson School District.
, Rianna will officially be a part of the Smithtown Central School District on Aug. 1.
Patch recently caught up with Rianna to discuss her move from Port Jefferson to Smithtown, pressure to take over a position formerly occupied by someone with nearly four decades in the district, and more.
Patch: What prompted your decision to go from the Port Jefferson School District to the Smithtown Central School District?
Rianna: It’s my home district; I live in Nesconset … I lived in the Smithtown/Nesconset area since 1993.
P: Was it a tough decision to make to leave?
R: Yes it was, but I felt it was a wonderful opportunity to work in my home district and to work with what I understand is a wonderful staff.
P: You are filling the shoes of Mary Cahill, who recently retired after being in the school district for 39 years. Does that add any pressure to you?
R: I have some big shoes to fill, she has been wonderful since I have been board approved to help me begin the transition to Smithtown and she has extended the invitation to work with her as I move into the position permanently.
P: What is your fondest memory during your time with the Port Jefferson School District?
R: I have many fond memories that I’m taking with me, memories of watching my group of students do well in the forensic competition, reading to my elementary staff, being interviewed by my middle school students as part of their projects – I could go on-and-on. It’s very bittersweet, I’ve had many, many good memories here, and I look forward to having many more with the students in Smithtown.