LITTLE SILVER – Carolyn M. Kossack, the superintendent of schools in the Little Silver School District, has been named the Monmouth County Superintendent of the Year.
On Aug. 28, Kossack, a resident of Howell, said she was “humbled” that her colleagues advocated for her recognition as superintendent of the year and explained that there is no formal application process in which the superintendents themselves apply for the annual recognition.
Rather, Kossack said a superintendent’s colleagues in each school district in Monmouth County nominate superintendents “who have exhibited a great deal of leadership that particular year.”
“That is why the recognition was particularly special to me,” Kossack said. “It was a recognition by my peers for the work I have tried to do.”
Kossack was chosen in a field of an estimated 55 superintendents.
Kossack, who joked that she “is getting old,” began her career as a teacher in Howell in 1988. She was a teacher for eight years before she began her administrative career in Freehold Township.
She worked in Freehold Township for 11 years as an assistant principal and in principal positions in several schools.
Gaining experience working with students in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade, Kossack said she sought to advance her career in education. She applied for the superintendent job in the Little Silver School District in 2007 and has retained that position for 13 years.
“It’s kind of like dog years in terms of the superintendent longevity in a district,” Kossack laughed.
The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders presented Kossack with a certificate of recognition for winning Monmouth County Superintendent of the Year during a workshop meeting on Aug. 20 in Freehold.
Because of Kossack’s leadership, the Little Silver Board of Education has achieved Master Board of Certification after professional development. Despite having one of the lowest per pupil costs in New Jersey, Little Silver ranks among the highest test scores in the state under Kossack’s direction, according to a press release.
During Kossack’s tenure, her leadership has enabled her to motivate school staff, parents, students and the community as a whole to achieve Little Silver’s educational goals and vision, according to the press release.
“I feel like Monmouth County is filled with excellent school leaders and this level of the process is purely a vote by my peers. It is an incredible honor that (my peers) view me in that light.”
Individuals who are recognized as superintendents of the year in their respective counties are encouraged to apply to a regional recognition process, Kossack said, adding that a formal application process is required.
Kossack applied for the regional recognition but said “there is steep competition” in central New Jersey school districts.
The two schools in Little Silver are the Point Road School, which educates children in pre-kindergarten through fourth grade, and the Markham Place School, which educates children in grades five through eight.