Livingston’s Special Education Departments to See Changes in Leadership

Burnet Hill Principal Lisa Steiger has been recommended to become the next Assistant Superintendent for Student Services at Livingston Public Schools. Credits: Marilyn Lehren

LIVINGSTON, NJ - Burnet Hill Principal Lisa Steiger has been recommended to become the next Assistant Superintendent for Student Services at Livingston Public Schools.
Steiger brings with her experiences as a learning disability teaching-consultant, a supervisor of student services and an elementary school principal.
“These experiences coupled with her 15 years in Livingston and respect she has garnered from her colleagues all speak to the excellent selection we have made,” said Interim Superintendent of Schools Jim O’Neill, who made the recommendation at the May 18 Livingston Board of Education meeting.
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“I have been extremely impressed with the depth of knowledge she has about special education and the compassion that Mrs. Steiger has for our classified students,” O’Neill said.  
Livingston conducted a search for the position to succeed Dr. Ted Kozlik, who has been serving Livingston as an Interim Assistant Superintendent.

“The answer to our search is not in another district but is the talented professional serving as principal of Burnet Hill School,” O’Neill said.
In his remarks to the Board of Education, O’Neill acknowledged the work Kozlik has done this year to move the district forward and pave the way for a new permanent replacement.

“The district owes Dr. Kozlik a debt of gratitude for the work he and his team have done this year. The district has come a long way in a short period of time,” O’Neill said.
“Providing the appropriate services to classified students is both one of our most important and most challenging responsibilities,” O’Neill said. “It is incumbent on us to find a person with a unique set of skills to provide leadership in special education and student services. The individual has to have knowledge of the law, a vision for our program, a commitment to the district, and a compassion for students with special needs.”
The Board of Education is expected for formally appoint Steiger at its next meeting on June 8.

Mary Azzolini has been appointed the new Supervisor of Special Services. She has been member of the Child Study Team at Livingston Public Schools for the past five years as a learning disability teacher-consultant.
Azzolini will work alongside Supervisor of Special Services Todd Mitchell as integral members of the Livingston’s special education team. 
She holds an advanced, ED.S. degree in Education Leadership, Management and Policy from Seton Hall University and a Master’s degree in Special Education, with LDT-C certification, from William Paterson University. She also holds a Master's degree in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from the University of New Haven and a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Boston College.
Azzolini's prior experience includes roles as head and co-head teacher of multi-age Montessori classrooms at Madison Montessori School in Madison and Red Oaks School in Morristown. Additionally, in the corporate sector, she has consulted with Fortune 100 companies to align employee productivity and performance with business strategy.

She will replace Terry Santora, the interim supervisor, who has served Livingston for the past two years.

"The district extends our thanks to Ms. Santora for the wealth of knowledge she brought to Livingston from her extensive experience in other districts," O'Neill said. "She helped us evaluate programs, monitor the summer program and brought valuable services to the high school that benefited both general and special education teachers."

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

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