Freehold Township school board names district’s new superintendent

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FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP – Neal Dickstein has been named the new superintendent of schools in the Freehold Township K-8 School District.

Dickstein’s appointment became official after approval from interim Monmouth County Superintendent Lester Richens and a vote from the Board of Education on Sept. 25. He will serve a four-year term from Sept. 26, 2018 through June 30, 2022, after which he may be reappointed. The superintendent’s position has a salary of $181,500.

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“I am truly humbled to be selected as the individual to lead this outstanding educational community,” Dickstein said. “It is my promise as superintendent to be an ethical and transparent leader who consistently makes decisions based upon what is best for the children of this district.”

Dickstein will succeed Ross Kasun, who left Freehold Township in August to become the superintendent of schools in the Lawrence Township School District in Mercer County.

Dickstein, who was an assistant superintendent at the time, had been serving as acting superintendent following Kasun’s departure from Freehold Township.

According to board President Jason Levy, Dickstein joined the school district in 2004 as the principal of the Joseph J. Catena School. He was named assistant superintendent for educational services and technology (now human resources and technology) in 2008.

Prior to his arrival in Freehold Township, Dickstein worked as a first, fifth and sixth grade teacher in the East Windsor Regional School District in Mercer County, then as an elementary school assistant principal and as the administrator of the elementary basic skills program.

In between his tenure as a teacher and administrator in East Windsor, he was selected as a Mercer technology fellow for the New Jersey State Department of Education, according to Levy.

Levy said school board members discussed the superintendent vacancy and the direction they wanted to pursue for the hiring process after Dickstein presented his vision and described where he would like to see the district go if he was chosen as the next superintendent.

“Knowing we had a very qualified internal candidate who has been with our district for years, basically performing an on-the-job interview, made our discussion very easy,” the board president said. “Unanimously, the board decided it would not be fiscally responsible to engage a search firm to find us candidates when we had the best candidate possible in-house. The board is excited by the vision Mr. Dickstein has and knows he is the right person to lead us at this time.”

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