Harford Schools Superintendent Robert M. Tomback’s management reorganization plans came to life with appointments made to two newly created positions at a school board meeting held June 14 in Bel Air.
William A. Lawrence was named to the highest instructional position in the county, associate superintendent of curriculum, instruction and assessment. Lawrence, who is new to HCPS, will be the only instructional leader reporting directly to Superintendent Tomback under the reorganization plan which takes effect in July. The new executive director of middle school performance will be Barbara P. Canavan, the highly regarded principal of Southampton Middle School.
The Harford County Board of Education voted unanimously to approve both appointments as recommended by Superintendent Tomback.
The Baltimore Sun reported in early February that Lawrence was removed from his post as assistant superintendent for the northwest region of Baltimore County Public Schools, and reassigned to a position in human resources.
Harford Superintendent Tomback, who is a former BCPS colleague of Lawrence, told The Dagger, “I have full confidence in his ability to fill the job and shape the job, which will result in coherent, cooperative measures that will result in improved student achievement and building teacher capacity.”
“The Board was fully apprised of Bill’s long and successful record in Baltimore County, including his recent reassignment, prior to voting on the appointment. The Board is very excited to have someone of Bill’s caliber join the Superintendent’s team, and we look forward to working with him in moving Harford County Public Schools forward,” Mark Wolkow, president of the Board of Education, wrote in an email Tuesday night.
Barbara Canavan’s promotion to executive director of middle school performance separates middle school and high school administration, a job previously combined under David A. Volrath, executive director of secondary education. The top high school spot will be renamed to mirror the middle school title and both Volrath and Canavan will report to Lawrence.
Tomback told The Dagger he was “thrilled” by Canavan’s elevation to the top middle school post, “She’s got the theoretical knowledge and she’s got the every day experience of what middle school can, should, and will be in Harford County Public Schools.”