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Taormina announces retirement from BOCES

July 18, 2017

Peter Taormina, who has been the deputy director of the Special Education division since 2010, recently announced he will be retiring from the BOCES. He will now be moving into the role of Director of Student Services with Vanderheyden Programs in Wynantskill, N.Y.

The Capital Region BOCES Board of Education approved Taormina's retirement at its July 17,2017 meeting. Taormina’s last day with the BOCES will be Sept. 1, 2017.

"During my nearly seven years at BOCES, I have learned a great deal and I have been privileged to work with so many highly-skilled and caring professionals. I am grateful to our teachers, teaching assistants, related service providers and the division principals, to our office professionals and technical support personnel, as well as our building maintenance, nursing and food service staff," said Taormina. "Together, they provide a safe, caring and stimulating environment in which our students grow, learn and thrive."

“Working with the larger BOCES,” he continued, “I have learned from a talented group of administrators who seek to find real solutions for our district partners. I have also found my work with those in our regional school districts and private institutions, along with the state Education Department to be an honor and privilege.”

“I have had the good fortune to work along with Peter to support our districts and the ever changing needs of their students,” said Assistant District Superintendent for Curriculum & Instruction Lynne Wells. “Peter has a deep understanding of special education regulation and law, and is a strong and kind-hearted advocate for students—assets that have greatly benefited the students we serve and ones I am sure will create a similar success in his new endeavor.”

Rita Levay coming on as interim Deputy Director of Special Ed

Rita Levay, Ed. D., will be stepping in as the interim Deputy Director of the division as of Sept. 1. Levay, who has worked in and around education for more than five decades, brings a wealth of knowledge to this position from the standpoint of a speech-language pathologist, educational administrator, as well as a facilitator of institutional change and growth. Levay and her team helped guide the creation of the implementation plan the division will use to bring about structural and programmatic change in the division.

“I am excited to be taking on this role with the Special Education division,” said Levay. “I absolutely love working with and for children and families, and putting my energies into creating educational programs and supports that can make their lives better.”

“I appreciate being a position to help lead this organization in redesigning their programs and services to better meet the needs of our students,” Levay continued. “I want this BOCES to be the best provider of services for complex students, as well as a ‘go-to’ resource of information, support and training for districts that are struggling to help meet the needs of the students they are educating in their own classrooms.”

Details about a search to hire a new Deputy Director for the division are now being finalized.

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