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RSU 29 superintendent submits resignation

HOULTON, Maine — The RSU 29 school district will have to find a new leader following the surprise resignation of Superintendent Ellen Halliday.

Halliday announced her plans to leave the school district at the end of the school year in a letter to her staff on March 22.

“It has been my honor and pleasure to serve as your superintendent of schools for the last six years,” Halliday wrote. “I will be forever grateful to the 2015 School Board who offered me an opportunity to lead this terrific school district. I thank you for your steadfast support and your dedication to RSU 29. I am so very proud of the many accomplishments that have been achieved.”

Halliday will leave the area to work with the Fremont School District in Fremont, New Hampshire. 

Halliday started her career as an educator in Presque Isle and worked in various roles within the SAD 1 school system for 26 years before taking her first superintendent position in Wells-Ogunquit in southern Maine.

She joined RSU 29 in 2015. Halliday holds a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Southern Maine and a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and special education from the University of Maine Farmington. 

“Ellen Halliday has been a great champion for not just our learners, but also an effective leader for our staff and school board,” board Chairman Fred Grant said. “We have been fortunate to have Ellen at RSU 29 and she will be deeply missed by everyone. While we hate to see her go, we’re excited for her as she begins this new chapter.  The RSU 29 Board will start the search for our new superintendent in the next couple of weeks.”

Halliday said the staff at RSU 29 has been extremely supportive during her time with the district.

“RSU 29 is fortunate to have in its employ some of the best administrators in the state of Maine, over 100 talented and caring educators, and an equal number of high-quality, hardworking support personnel. This district is made up of folks who epitomize the virtues of our many Words of the Year — commitment, respect, kindness, grit and resilience. I could not be more proud of having the opportunity to be their leader.”

Halliday added she feels the district is in a good place and therefore the time is right for her to make the change to her new position in Fremont, New Hampshire.

“It is my hope that we have weathered the worst of COVID-19 and I think RSU 29 is in a good place,” she said. “Thus it is a good time for my husband [Clay] and I to move closer to our five grown children and our first grandchild. I have accepted a position that allows me to step back just a bit and lead a smaller district on a part-time basis. I am excited for this change and know it is a good decision for me and for my family.”

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