Amy Burns will replace McGee leading NSHS

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NORTH SMITHFIELD – An educator with experience serving as both a researcher and leader at various schools across the state has been named principal of North Smithfield High School, effective July 1.

Supt. Michael St. Jean has announced that Amy Burns will replace former principal Timothy McGee, who retired at the end of the school year.

The hire follows a posting of the position that attracted some 20 applicants. A search committee, made up of the district’s assistant superintendent; director of pupil personnel; the NSHS assistant principal; four department heads from NSHS and one parent, interviewed eight candidates before ultimately choosing the new school leader.

Burns served as assistant principal at Central Falls High School prior to working for two years as principal of Robert F. Kennedy Elementary School in Providence. In 2021, she was named Johnston Senior High School Assistant Principal before taking on a role as principal at Winsor Hill Elementary School, where she recently completed the school year.

She holds a master’s and Ph.D. in education as well as a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, and is on the faculty at the University of Rhode Island. She is also a published researcher, authoring numerous works on education in the state, and teaches doctoral-level courses in statistics.

“I can not think of anybody with more experience that is going to just truly benefit North Smithfield – the high school and the entire community,” St. Jean said.

The hire was announced during a brief special meeting of the board Thursday, June 30.

“She was an amazing principal; more knowledgeable than anyone I know,” said St. Jean. “I’m absolutely thrilled she’s going to be joining our team.”

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