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West acting principal to retire

Updated 11:54 am, Friday, March 7, 2014
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Joanne LaVista, West Elementary School's acting principal, will retire in June, New Canaan Public Schools announced Thursday.

"After a truly wonderful career as a New Canaan teacher, math and technology coordinator, and administrator, I have decided to retire from the New Canaan Public Schools at the end of this school year," LaVista wrote in a letter to West School parents this week.

LaVista assumed the position in September, following the appointment of former principal Jill Correnty as the district's interim assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction.

Before September, LaVista had been the school's assistant principal since 2001.

In her letter, she said she feels lucky to have worked for New Canaan Public Schools.

"I have always felt fortunate to be connected to such a special community of learners, educators and families," LaVista wrote. "With a career spanning 34 years, one of the most wonderful experiences I have had is seeing my former students as parents and being involved in the education of their children!"

This is district's second retirement announced in less than a month. In February, East Elementary School Principal Alexandra "Bunny" Potts said she's retiring after 15 years in the position.

LaVista has taught at Saxe and West schools in New Canaan. She began her career as a teacher at New Canaan's Center School in 1980.

She has also served as chairman of Tech Council and member of the Crisis Advisory Board and Planning Committee.

Though she's only had the job for a few months, LaVista said being West School principal was a remarkable time.

"Undoubtedly the highlight of my career has been this year as the acting principal of West School," she wrote in her letter. "It has truly been an amazing experience and one that will make me smile with pride and gratitude for a long time to come. I know that West School is a very special place and it has been a privilege to have been part of its growth and success. I will miss all of you, but mostly all of your precious children!"

LaVista's last day will be June 30.

-- Nelson Oliveira