Principal leaving Discovery School at Four Corners

  • Jake Toomey is leaving his position as principal at the Discovery School at Four Corners in Greenfield on Friday. Staff Photo/PAUL FRANZ

  • Jake Toomey is leaving his position as principal at the Discovery School at Four Corners in Greenfield on Friday. Staff Photo/PAUL FRANZ

Staff Writer
Published: 12/31/2019 6:01:56 PM
Modified: 12/31/2019 6:01:38 PM

GREENFIELD — Jake Toomey has worked in every grade level of education from preschool to 12th grade. So it seems fitting to him to add higher education to his resumé.

The 41-year-old said he will step down as principal of the Discovery School at Four Corners on Friday to take over as the director of human resources at Hampshire College, a position he begins three days later.

“It’s really hard to leave this school. I’ve been a member of this school community for over 10 years now. My kids went here, so I’ve been a parent here, I was a teacher here for a year and then became the principal, so I feel like in the past 10 years I’ve kind of worn every hat in the school,” he said sitting in his office Friday. “I’ve been coming to this building for 10 years in one way or the other, so it was a hard decision to leave. It’s a great group here. It’s a great school. I couldn’t have done the things I’ve done here without such support from the staff as well as the families here.”

Superintendent Jordana Harper said Nancy Putnam, a longtime Greenfield principal and the district’s most senior elementary principal, has agreed to fill in for Toomey until a permanent replacement is selected.

Toomey, an Army National Guard veteran who spent a year in Iraq in 2005, said he has been with the Greenfield School Department for about 5½ years and has worked as principal for about 3½ years. The Berkshire County native was hired for the principal role in 2016 to replace Suzanne Sullivan, who left at the end of that academic year to take a job in her hometown of Billerica to be closer to family.

Toomey’s time in the school district also includes a 1½-year stint as personnel administrator.

“I kind of enjoyed that work and I’ve been looking to kind of head back in that direction,” he said. He had also been principal at the Academy of Early Learning for one year when he was hired as principal at the Discovery School, which educates children in kindergarten through fourth grade.

Harper said Toomey is a dedicated professional with a great deal of initiative.

“We certainly wish him the best. It’s been really wonderful to see him rise up through the ranks, as they say. He’s really engaged the community,” she said. “I know he has a bright career ahead of him.”

Harper said a committee is being formed to select Toomey’s replacement. The job opening was posted to SchoolSpring.com, a job site for education professionals, about two weeks ago.

Toomey plans to remain living in town and will commute to Amherst for work. He said he would like to continue serving the city by joining a board or committee in the future.

Reach Domenic Poli at: dpoli@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 262.




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