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Dear WMS Community:
Last spring, I made the bittersweet announcement that our beloved founder and Head of School, Ronnie Moskowitz, would retire at the end of the 2021-22 school year. Aware that our Board of Trustees was then faced with the daunting task of finding a replacement for her, we knew two things: it would not be easy and we had to commence a process that had never been undertaken in the school’s 47 year history. We thoughtfully began by forming a Search Committee that was comprised of a cross section of the school’s various constituencies.
Over the past six months, the Search Committee has been hard at work. From an initial pool of applicants, we narrowed the field to six semi-finalists who came for in-person meetings with the Search Committee. From there, the field was narrowed to three finalists who each spent two days at our school over the past several weeks. They met in person with faculty, staff and board members. They toured our school and really got to know us and we them. At the end of the process, the Search Committee unanimously voted to recommend Carrie Kries to the Board of Trustees and the Board of Trustees has unanimously voted to appoint her the next Head of Washington Market School. Carrie will formally join us on July 1, 2022 and will begin to onboard with meetings at the school throughout the spring.
Carrie comes to us from Gladwyne Montessori in Gladwyne, PA where she has been the Head of School for the past six years. Leading a school with 225 students, a staff of 60 and an annual budget of $5mm, Carrie is ideally suited to carry on the work of Washington Market School. Carrie holds an Associate of Arts degree from New York University, a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood/Elementary Education from Arcadia University, and a Master’s of Science in Educational Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to her headship at Gladwyne, she served for five years as the CEO for Philadelphia Montessori Charter School. Carrie holds her Early Childhood/Elementary as well as K-12 Principal certification in Pennsylvania. She is also a credentialed American Montessori Society (AMS) Administrator. In addition to her work as a school leader, Carrie serves as a Commissioner of the Pennsylvania Association of Independent Schools (PAIS) and Mentor in the University of Pennsylvania’s School Leadership Program for Aspiring Leaders. Carrie often speaks at national conferences such as the American Montessori Society (AMS) Annual Event and the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and will be presenting in the leadership track at this year’s AMS event in Nashville, TN.
Carrie is a proud parent of three sons and step parent to another, Shane, who is 13. Her youngest son, Charlie, is a car enthusiast and athlete who will graduate from high school this spring; her middle son, Simon, is an artist, currently serving as a teaching assistant with young children; and her oldest, Henry, is a classical trombone player and aspiring actor who lives in Brooklyn. Her partner, Keith Wilford is a holistic health teacher and lacrosse coach. In her down time, Carrie is a maker and loves to build and upholster furniture, bake, and exercise. Before becoming a school leader, Carrie was the cooking host for nearly 100 episodes of children’s television programming.
Carrie said of joining our community: “When I think about Washington Market School and the work, love and dedication poured into the community by founding Head, Ronnie Moskowitz, I am both humbled and awestruck…With a founding Head leaving a magnificent legacy that includes over forty years of families whose lives have been so lovingly touched by her vision, the WMS community is poised to step into its next phase with grace and strength. As your next Head Of School, I am eager to honor and acknowledge Ronnie’s lifelong work. I will endeavor to lead the school through all of the exciting milestones and achievements that lie ahead with humility and courage.”
Ronnie said of Carrie’s appointment: “In Carrie our board has found a skilled leader with an impressive educational background. She is thoughtful, passionate and well prepared to meet the challenge of taking Washington Market School into its next era. She brings to WMS extensive experience as a Head of School and I am confident that she will continue to support the founding principles of WMS with her strong Montessori foundation and genuine love of learning, of teaching and most importantly of children. I am looking forward to partnering with Carrie while she transitions into her new role in July of next year after which I will continue to work with ex-missions for the 2022/2023 school year.”
I would like to extend the collective thanks of the community to Lisa Hofer, Chair of the Search Committee, and its members Sheila Wolper, Melissa Dassori, Swati Alagh, Jennifer Rothenberg, Mike Saich, Linda Incantalupo, Heather Burchyns and Jan Wyllie and to the faculty and staff of the school for making our candidates feel so welcome. And most of all, to Ronnie for shepherding our finalists through the process on their visits to the school.
We are planning opportunities for faculty and parents to meet Carrie over the next few months and there will be a big celebration for Ronnie in the spring. Stay tuned for more on all of these fronts in the coming months.
With anticipation for a wonderful new chapter for us all.
Chairman, Board of Trustees
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