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|Suzanne Federspiel, Chair, was first elected to the School Committee in 2017. She has been an educator for more than thirty years in Connecticut and Massachusetts. Most recently she served as a special education teacher, a literacy coach, and then as an elementary school principal for the Boston Public Schools. She is currently a teacher mentor in Boston.|
In addition to her degrees in education from U-Conn, Storrs, and U-Mass, Amherst, Suzanne has an MBA from Boston University. She and her husband have lived in Brookline since 1985. Their two children attended Pierce School and Brookline High School. Ms. Federspiel’s current term expires in 2023.
David A. Pearlman
David Pearlman, Vice-Chair, was elected to the School Committee in 2018. He works as a child welfare attorney in the private counsel division of the Committee for Public Counsel Services, representing indigent parents and children at the Trial and Appellate levels. Mr. Pearlman has been elected three times to Brookline Town Meeting, where he continues to serve. He also volunteers his time to several Brookline neighborhood associations.
He earned his B.A. in American Studies from Brandeis University and his J.D. from Boston University. A near life-long resident of Brookline, Mr. Pearlman is a product of the Brookline Public Schools. He attended the Pierce School for pre-school, the Lincoln School for grades K-1, the Devotion School for grades 2-8, and Brookline High School for grades 9-12. Mr. Pearlman’s present term expires in 2021.
|Sharon Abramowitz was elected to the School Committee in 2019. She holds a B.A. from Brandeis University, an M.A. from Rutgers University, an M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard University, and has completed postdoctoral work at the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Abramowitz is a medical anthropologist and global health consultant who works on humanitarian disasters, epidemics, community engagement, mental health and psychosocial support, gender, and human rights with organizations like UNICEF, Doctors Without Borders, the World Health Organization, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the U.S. Agency for International Development.|
She has authored and edited numerous books and publications; is a noted evaluation expert; provides expert testimony in asylum cases, and writes international policy and standards for community engagement. She is married to Greig Arendt and has three children at the Driscoll School. Dr. Abramowitz’s term expires in 2022.
Helen Charlupski was first elected to the School Committee in 1992. She holds a BA and Master of Social Work from the University of Michigan. She was a member of the Early Childhood Advisory Council of the Massachusetts Department of Education from 1994-2004 and has been the Massachusetts Association of School Committees representative to the Department of Early Education and Care since its inception in 2005.
Ms. Charlupski was the Chair of EDCO (Education Collaborative, which Brookline belongs to along with 17 other communities west of Boston) from 2009-2012. Ms. Charlupski is married to Dr. Joseph Biederman and has three children who graduated from the Runkle School and Brookline High School. Ms. Charlupski’s present term expires in 2022.
Susan Wolf Ditkoff
Susan Wolf Ditkoff was first elected to the School Committee in 2008. Ms. Ditkoff advises philanthropists on issues related to poverty, racial equity, environmental justice, and centering beneficiaries in decision-making. She was formerly the Vice President of the Harvard Business School Alumni Board of Directors and a Visiting Lab Fellow at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics. Formerly in her career she was a bilingual public school paraprofessional, a financial analyst, and on the launch team of a healthcare startup.
She and her husband have three children at Driscoll. She has a BA from Yale College and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Ms. Ditkoff’s current term expires in 2022.
Andy Liu was elected to the School Committee in 2020. He holds a BA in philosophy from Harvard University and a PhD in mathematics from the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Liu is a neuroscientist and works as a research fellow in neurobiology at Boston Children’s Hospital, where he does experiments to understand how cells in the eye sense light and communicate with the brain.
Dr. Liu is a former Town Meeting Member. He and Rachel Wilson have a son who is a second-grader at Pierce School and a graduate of BEEP. Dr. Liu’s present term expires in 2023.
Jennifer Monopoli was elected to the School Committee in 2018. She has been an educator for seventeen years working in both urban and suburban districts. She has taken leadership roles in the schools she has worked in as a member of Site Council, the Leadership Team, as a Lead Teacher and has written curriculum in several districts. Jennifer currently teaches fourth grade in the Newton Public Schools.
She has a B.A. in Psychology and Women’s Studies from the University at Albany, and an M.Ed. in Science Education from the University of Houston. Jennifer is the mother of two children in the Public Schools of Brookline. Her daughter attends the Lawrence School and her son attends the Lincoln School. Ms. Monopoli’s term expires in 2021.
|Mariah Nobrega was elected to the School Committee in 2020. She holds a BA in Political science from NYU and an MBA from Northeastern, where she works in the College of Engineering. She has been a Town Meeting Member since 2009 and was a member of the Brookline Advisory (finance) Committee 2015-2020. In 2019 she was appointed to the Brookline Commission for Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Relations. A near life-long resident of Brookline, Ms. Nobrega attended BEEP at Lynch Center, Lawrence School, and Brookline High School.|
She and her husband have three children at Brookline High School, Pierce School, and in preschool. She was treasurer of the Pierce PTO from 2014-2019 and is in her first term as co-president of the Brookline High School Alumni Association. Ms. Nobrega’s present term expires in 2023.
|Barbara Scotto was first elected to the School Committee in 2009. She is a graduate of Wilson College and has an M.Ed. from Johns Hopkins University and an M.S and an M.A. from Simmons College where she was an adjunct member of the faculty for many years. She is Co-Director of Children’s Literature New England and is also actively involved in the work of The Examined Life: Greek Studies in the Schools. Ms. Scotto joined the Brookline School System in 1976, beginning as the librarian for the BEEP project. She spent most of her career at the Driscoll School where she taught from 1981 through 2006.|
In 2002, she was the winner of the Brookline Foundation’s Ernest Caverly Award for Excellence in Teaching.Her two children graduated from Devotion School and Brookline High. She has been a Town Meeting member, first in Precinct 2 and currently in Precinct 8, since 1973. Ms. Scotto’s present term expires in 2021.
Content retrieved from: https://www.brookline.k12.ma.us/Page/370.
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Interim Superintendent of Schools
Ben Lummis was appointed Interim Superintendent of Schools by the School Committee in August 2019. Mr. Lummis is an accomplished leader, problem solver, and team builder who has worked in public education for twenty years.
Mr. Lummis worked as a Vice President at the National Center on Time & Learning, leading the TIME Collaborative, a five-state initiative to develop models of high quality expanded time schools. In this position, Mr. Lummis led the team responsible for direct work with principals, teachers, and district leaders helping them to effectively expand the school day to deepen student engagement, strengthen instruction, and increase academic achievement. Prior to coming to Brookline, he was the Vice President of Educator and Professional Development Programs at EF Education First and a Director at the Center for Collaborative Education. He has served as a School Committee member in Cambridge, and began his career in education as a middle school English teacher in Cambridge and Needham.
Mr. Lummis first joined the Public Schools of Brookline in 2015, as Special Assistant to the Superintendent for Strategy and Performance. In that role, Mr. Lummis was responsible for the development of the district’s strategic plan, process and decision-making improvements based on staff input and research-based best practices, and creating processes to better support educators in using data to strengthen student learning.
Mr. Lummis earned a Master of Arts degree in Teaching at Tufts University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy and Economics from the University of Michigan.
Mary Ellen Normen
Deputy Superintendent for Administration and Finance
Mary Ellen Normen (Dunn) joined the Public Schools of Brookline in July 2015. As the Deputy Superintendent for Administration and Finance, she is responsible for all financial and operational aspects of the Brookline Public Schools including budget, finance, facilities planning, operations, and emergency response.
Ms. Normen currently serves as an instructor and mentor for many school business administrators in the areas of municipal finance law, policy analysis, program evaluation, and is an advocate for fostering collaborative partnerships within schools and municipal departments. She was recently (2019) voted to be an officer of the Massachusetts Association of School Business Officials and will serve a leadership term ending in 2023.
Ms. Normen has a breadth and depth of municipal finance knowledge and experience that crosses both school and the municipal boundaries. Ms. Normen (Dunn) served as the Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations for the Lexington Public Schools for eight years. Prior to that, she served as the Director of Fiscal and Management Services in Natick Public Schools for four years. In addition, she has served as the Director of Finance and Operations in Needham Public Schools and as a certified Town Treasurer and Tax Collector in the Town of Sudbury. She also is a past president and officer of the Massachusetts Government Finance Officers Association. She started her professional career as a Presidential Management Intern with the US General Accounting Office, now known as the US Government Accountability Office.
Ms. Normen holds a Masters of Public Administration from Suffolk University, School of Management with a concentration in Government Finance and a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science from the University of Massachusetts (Amherst).
Deputy Superintendent for Teaching and Learning
Nicole Gittens is a veteran high school educator and comes to Brookline after serving 11 years in administration in Boston Public Schools as Headmaster at the John D. O’Bryant School of Mathematics and Science and Headmaster of the Urban Science Academy. Prior to her administrative experience, Ms. Gittens was a mathematics teacher at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School for eight years. Ms. Gittens began her teaching career as a student teacher at Brookline High School.
As the Deputy Superintendent of Teaching and Learning, she is responsible for the ongoing development, implementation and evaluation of teaching and learning in grades pre-kindergarten through 12.
Ms. Gittens holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and Business Law from Temple University, a Masters in Teaching from Simmons College, and a Certificate in Educational Administration from the University of Massachusetts.
Deputy Superintendent for Student Services
Casey Ngo-Miller was appointed Deputy Superintendent for Student Services by the School Committee in May 2019. Prior to becoming the Deputy Superintendent, Ms. Ngo-Miller was the district’s Co-Director of PK-8 Special Education in Brookline. Through her work in Brookline, Ms. Ngo-Miller is known for her collaborative approach to problem-solving, her calm and organized demeanor, and her careful follow through.
Before coming to Brookline, Ms. Ngo-Miller was the Director of Special Education for the UP Education Network. She has also served as the Director of Special Education of the Early Learning Center and the elementary school of the Community Day Charter Public School, ad an Administrative Intern with the Director of Special Education at Framingham Public Schools, the School Psychologist and Team Chair for Fort Lee High School in New Jersey, and the Program Coordinator and Residential Teacher at the May Institute for Neuro-Rehabilitation.
Ms. Ngo-Miller has earned a Master of Education in School Leadership from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, a Master of Arts in School Psychology from Tufts University, as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Politics from Brandeis University. Ms. Ngo-Miller holds a Professional License for Special Education Administrator and is a Nationally Certified School Psychologist.
Senior Director of Educational Equity
|Kalise Wornum joined the Public Schools of Brookline in 2018 as the new Senior Director of Educational Equity. Dr. Wornum will provide direction, support and coordination for the District’s priority of eliminating opportunity and outcome gaps. She will work directly with educators, students, families, and community members in our collective efforts to address issues of educational equity across the district.|
Prior to joining Brookline, Dr. Wornum was the Director for the K-12 METCO Program in the Wellesley Public Schools for 15 years. She also served as Executive Director for Empowering Multicultural Initiatives (EMI), a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the academic achievement of students of color and promoting culturally relevant practices.
A graduate of the Lexington METCO program herself, Dr. Wornum has worked with numerous institutions across the Commonwealth and the New England area and has made it her lifelong passion to confront racism through education. She earned her Bachelor of Arts at Bradford College, a Masters of Arts from the University of Vermont, and a Doctorate from Capella University.
In September 2018, Dr. Wornum was appointed by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to serve on the Racial Imbalance Advisory Council. The council advises the Commissioner of Education and the Board of Education on matters pertinent to the development and maintenance of school desegregation/integration in public schools within the Commonwealth.
Content retrieved from: https://www.brookline.k12.ma.us/site/Default.aspx?PageID=38.
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Deputy Superintendent for Student Services
Co-Director of Special Education (PK-8)
Baker, Driscoll, Pierce, Ruffin Ridley, and BEEP Schools
Co-Director of Special Education (K-8)
Heath, Lawrence, Lincoln, and Runkle Schools
Co-Director of Special Education (9-12)
Brookline High School
Out of District Coordinator
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Administration & Finance
The Office of Administration and Finance is responsible for the business operations, budget development and monitoring, payroll, building services, transportation, information technology services, and food services for the school department and intergovernmental relations.
Mary Ellen Normen
Deputy Superintendent for Administration and Finance