By MATTHEW SOCKOL
SAYREVILLE — Four members of the Sayreville Public School District were recognized recently for their service and commitment to the district.
The Board of Education recognized the retirements of Sandra McAnneny, Alice Potenski, Debra Shedlock and Isabelle Jo Hospidor during the Jan. 19 meeting.
All four retirements will become effective on July 1.
McAnneny is a language arts teacher at Sayreville Middle School. She taught in the district for 18 years and has been working in education for a total of 31 years.
“Sandy has touched the lives of all of her students and all of our staff that she worked with during her time here, and we are sad to see her go,” Superintendent Richard R. Labbe read from a statement. “However, we know she is looking forward to spending more time with her family and friends. Congratulations to Sandy.”
Potenski is a teacher at Project Before Preschool, the district’s preschool program, and teaches the full-day sessions. She has taught preschoolers for 11 years. She previously worked for the New Jersey Commission of the Blind and the Visually Impaired, a division of the state’s Department of Human Services, and joined Sayreville’s district after discovering her passion was to work with young children.
“Having had the opportunity as the director of special services to work with Mrs. Potenski for the past two years, I am going to greatly miss her,” Labbe said. “She’s an amazing person, she’s an inspiring educator, and the work that she does with those preschoolers is nothing less than remarkable.”
Labbe also commended Potenski for her work in organizing the preschool’s carnival, which takes place at the end of the school year.
“I personally would like to congratulate and wish Mrs. Potenski all the best in her retirement,” he said.
Shedlock is the director of transportation for the district, a position she has held since 2000. She previously worked as a bus driver for the district from 1990-99. Shedlock has also provided Sayreville residents with shelter and transportation during community disasters.
“Having had the honor and privilege to work with Debbie for the past two years, I know how truly terrific she is at her job (and) how much she truly cares,” Labbe said. “While you may not see that all the time, she is deeply passionate about this community, about this school district and, most importantly, about the state she has served so well for so many years.”
Board President Michael Macagnone and Board Member Kevin Ciak also spoke highly of Shedlock.
“My respect for Debbie was solidified during Hurricane Sandy and what she did as far as the bus transportation and working with the borough,” Macagnone said. “Transporting people that were flooded out and going into ground zero that night I think is a testament, and any time there’s something in town, she was always there available to provide the transportation if necessary.”
“From a transportation coordinator perspective, our efficiency rating was always high,” Ciak added. “We got children to where they needed to be, we got them there safely, we got them home safely, and she coordinated a large part of that. [She’s] a great lady and we’re really thankful for her service to the district.”
Hospidor is the confidential secretary to Business Administrator Emidio D’Andrea. She joined the district in 1986 as a 10-month secretary and was promoted to confidential secretary to the superintendent’s office in 1994 before becoming the business administrator’s confidential secretary.
“I’ve always found Jo to be what I would call a consummate professional,” Macagnone said. “It was just a pleasure working with her because I know if you called her, she was going to provide you (with) what you needed.”
“A lady of absolute class and a lady of absolute loyalty,” Ciak continued. “Anything that was told to her in confidence will go to the grave with her because you could always trust her to keep the confidence of this district and of the board. I really appreciate her loyalty to us and her dedication.”