Providence interim superintendent to step down Friday


Frances Gallo (File photo)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The superintendent of Providence Public Schools will be departing the district on Friday.

Interim Superintendent Fran Gallo, who has been reporting to R.I. Education Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green since the state took over the district, announced her intentions in a letter to the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) Tuesday.

Gallo, who came out of retirement for the Providence job, was limited by state law to working just 90 days in the district without her pension pausing.

District spokesperson Laura Hart said Friday will be Gallo’s 80th day, and she’s planning to use the other ten days to work with Infante-Green and “incoming leadership” in 2020.

Infante-Green still has not named a permanent superintendent for the district, despite extending an offer to someone in the fall. Infante-Green took state control of the district on Nov. 1.

“The real work for positive change is coming together,” Gallo said in the letter. “Hopefully, the transitional work completed during my time with you has served its purpose.”

Hart said Dorothy Smith will fill in as interim superintendent. Smith served as acting superintendent over the summer after the departure of Superintendent Chris Maher.

Prior to retiring in 2015, Gallo was the superintendent of Central Falls schools.

“I would ask that you, as administrators, teachers, and staff serving the Providence schools, continue to act with honorable professionalism,” Gallo wrote in her letter. “Embrace this new beginning with commitment and determination. We must cut away any scar tissue that may have hardened some of our hearts. Allow the aloe of fresh starts to heal the traumas experienced both in our schools and in our homes.”

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