BERNARDS TOWNSHIP, NJ - Ridge High School Principal Frank Howlett, who has been out of his office on medical leave since late April, returned to his office for part of the day on May 19, Schools Superintendent Nick Markarian said following Monday's Board of Education meeting.
Howlett, who is improving, will be back on a part-time basis for now, Markarian said.
Howlett's absence was announced in an email sent by Markarian to parents on April 29. At that time, he said that Howlett, who has been the school's principal for several years, "had to take some time away from the district for medical reasons."
"Rest assured that Mr. Howlett is doing well and should be 100 percent before long," the email said.
Following his return, Howlett will be working in tandem with Tom DiGianci, the retired Watchung Hills Regional High School principal, "to ensure that the duties of principal are completed," Markarian said in a May 15 email to The Alternative Press.
On April 28, the Board of Education appointed DiGianci to temporarily fill Howlett's position at the high school, Markarian said in the earlier email to parents.
Markarian said DiGianci is familiar with the high school since the administrator had filled in during the maternity leave of one of the school's assistant principals this year.
Markarian added on April 29 that, "Mr. Howlett's dedication to the students of Ridge High School is boundless and he has been performing many tasks while away."
At that time, Markarian said that the high school is fortunate to have a "very strong" team of assistant principals. He said then that he was anticipating Howlett soon would return to Ridge to work at least part time for the remainder of the year.