Hardy Elementary School Principal Charlene Cook will be retiring at the end of the academic year, the Superintendent’s office has announced. Cook has led the K – 5 Weston Rd. school since 2013, capping off a career devoted to public education.
Before coming to Hardy, she served as principal at the J.L. Mulready Elementary School in Hudson, Mass. for nine years. Before that, she was as assistant director for teaching and learning in the Boston Public Schools and was a classroom teacher at the Mather Elementary School in Dorchester.
In a message to the school community, Supt. Lussier said, “We remain grateful for Charlene’s strong leadership at Hardy during the past seven years and for her 34 years of service in public education in Massachusetts. Charlene has touched the lives of thousands of students during her career, and she will be sorely missed both at Hardy and as a member of our District leadership team.”
As the search process for a new Hardy principal begins, Lussier will be working with PTO leaders and parent representatives as part of the interview team. A candidate pool is expected to be winnowed down to a selection of finalists by March, in hopes that a final appointment will be made by the beginning of April.
The last new principal hire for the Wellesley Public Schools was in summer 2019, when Leigh Petrowsky was appointed as principal of Sprague Elementary School. Petrowsky replaced Susan Snyder, who served as principal 2015 – 19. At that time, potential principals were clamoring to get into the WPS system. Petrowsky beat out 51 applicants for the position.
Wellesley has had little turnover among school principals in recent years.