Dedham Middle School principal to take over at Ottoson in July

Tim RuggereRuggere

Timothy R. Ruggere, currently the principal of Dedham Middle School, has agreed to serve as the next permanent principal of Ottoson Middle School, starting in July.

Ruggere, 43, is in his second year as principal at the Dedham Middle School, after previously serving as vice principal at Dedham High.

The announcement was made in an e-mail to parents March 2 by Judy Malone Neville, interim principal at the Ottoson. She quoted an e-mail from Kathleen Bodie, interim superintendent, who wrote:

"I believe that Tim's experience, demonstrated leadership, enthusiasm, and energy will serve our middle school and district well in the years ahead.

"We were fortunate to have three excellent candidates for the position, all of whom would have been good choices, which made the decision difficult. We thank Mr. Grubb and Mr. Edwards for sharing with us their ideas and time over the last few weeks.

"Thank you also to the Search Committee, chaired by Charlie Skidmore [Arlington High School principal], for its excellent work."

He competed for the Arlington post with Jacob Edwards, a middle school assistant principal in Gloucester, and William Grubb, a middle school assistant principal in Belmont. Both are Arlington residents.

"Any one of the three of them could be a very strong principal," Bodie told the Daily Transcript in a story published Feb. 25.

"The question is what is going to be the best match for our middle school. But they're all very competent individuals."

The newspaper reported that hoped to find work closer to his home in Andover, where he has two young children.

Ruggere was recently one of five finalists for the principal's job at Littleton High School, but John Harrington, assistant principal of Algonquin Regional High School, emerged on top there, the Daily Transcript reported.

Ruggere is enrolled in a doctoral program at Northeastern University. He holds a C.A.G.S degree in educational leadership from Cambridge College and an Ed.M. in reading from Boston University.

Ruggere, Bodie and Skidmore have been asked to comment.

A 14-member search committee interviewed seven candidates before deciding on the three finalists.

Bodie was not part of the committee, but she made the hiring decision.

That decision moves the school further from the controversy in the summer of 2007 that saw then-Principal Stavroula Bouris and tech teacher Chuck Coughlin fired. Both are seeking to have their dismissal overturned in arbitration.

Malone Neville had been an administrator in the Newton Public Schools and came out of retirement to lead the Ottoson since September 2007.

This story was published at Monday, March 2, and was updated after that.