Central board names district chief

Bethpage ass’t super to head Bellmore-Merrick district on July 1


The Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District Board of Education has appointed John DeTommaso, the current assistant superintendent for instruction in the Bethpage School District, as superintendent of the Central School District, effective July 1.

The announcement was made at the board’s April 3 meeting. DeTommaso, 49, of Rockville Centre, will succeed Dr. Henry Kiernan, who has served as district superintendent since 2005 and announced his retirement earlier this year.

The new post will be a homecoming for DeTommaso. He began his career as a social studies teacher at Mepham High School in North Bellmore 25 years ago. He remained a teacher for six years before serving as the district’s athletic director for two years and as an assistant principal at Calhoun High School in Merrick for seven.

From there, he became principal of Bethpage High School for six years, followed by four years as the assistant superintendent for instruction for the Bethpage School District.

DeTommaso is married to Heather, a second-grade teacher in the Uniondale School District. The couple have three children. Their oldest, Brendan, is a sophomore at Princeton University, where he plays on the No. 7-ranked Tigers lacrosse team. They also have two daughters, Briar Rose, who is in high school, and Ailis, who is in middle school. Both play lacrosse.

“I am definitely honored and privileged to return to Bellmore-Merrick,” DeTommaso said. “It’s a great community and a great school district. I am really thankful to the Board of Education for this opportunity. I’m going to give it everything I can to help the students and staff to achieve their educational dreams.”

Those who know DeTommaso say that he is modest about his athletic achievements, but he is considered among the top defense players in the history of college lacrosse. DeTommaso, who played for Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, helped lead the university’s lacrosse team to two national championships, in 1984 and 1985, and received the Schmeisser Award, given to the nation’s top defenseman, in 1985.

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