Fran Bennett, the principal of Saw Mill Road Elementary School, accidentally described the retirees in her district as graduates during a celebration in their honor last week. But after some laughter, she chose not to correct herself.
“Truly, it is a graduation,” she said of retirement. “It is moving on to another phase of your life, and I wish you only the best.”
The Bellmore and North Bellmore school districts said goodbye not only to beloved members of the faculty and staff in various buildings this June, but also to administrators who will officially retire on July 1.
North Bellmore bid Superintendent Arnold Goldstein and seven other retirees farewell at a June 13 meeting of the Board of Education. District officials also thanked Trustee Rosemarie Corless for more than seven years of service. Corless will not sit on next year’s board, having lost her re-election bid in May.
Goldstein began his tenure in North Bellmore in September 2008, Board of Education President JoAnn DeLauter said. Now, he said, he is proud to be part of North Bellmore’s professional class of 2013. Leaving will be bittersweet, Goldstein said, adding that it has been a privilege to serve as superintendent in a district that maintains a standard of excellence that he is confident that his successor, Marie Testa, will uphold.
Goldstein also thanked the board, faculty, staff and students. “After so many years in education, I take nothing for granted,” he said. “I am filled with the deepest gratitude as I prepare to depart.”
He noted that his fellow retirees — Bruce Brower, Miriam Burke, Kathleen Donohue, Jean Farraher, Dr. Maureen Hogan, Maria Marti and Nina Smith — were all hard-working professionals dedicated to serving children.
At Bellmore’s board meeting on June 18, Clifford Molinelli, the principal of the Charles A. Reinhard Early Childhood Center, and three others were recognized. Molinelli was also honored at a special assembly at Reinhard, which is home to students in pre-kindergarten through second grade.