The Norton School Committee voted unanimously to hire Joseph Baeta as the new superintendent of schools Thursday night.
Baeta, who started out at the Southeastern Regional Technical School, moved to Sharon and then became the superintendent of schools in Holbrook after working nine months as the high school principal and later as the interim superintendent.
He said he never really wanted an administrative position, but it just kind of fell into his lap.
“I knew I didn’t want to do one thing in administration,” he said. “I never sent kids to the office, I never wanted that part of the job.”
Baeta was chosen after a lengthy search process that started in November after the previous search failed to reach a favorable conclusion in contract negotiations. Norton and Baeta have yet to work out a contract at this point.
School committee chair Andrew Mackie said that he wanted Baeta because of his previous experience as a superintendent, and the other committee members echoed his sentiment.
“He really reflected on the variety of the experience he had and how it formed who he is today,” Mackie said. “I think in the end that his sitting experience as a superintendent, ends up making him stand out. The bottom line is I heard him reflect and talk about issues that we think about and talk about in a very specific way. He’s right in the same wavelength and he’s thinking about the same things.”
School committee member Marge Werner, who also escorted Baeta around the district for a small tour during the day, said he was also very interested in how the schools worked from the teachers to the students to the staff.
“He was a good listener, he asked good questions, he listened to what people had to say,” she said. “He wanted to meet everybody from the custodians to the office staff.”
For all committee members, it was Baeta’s experience in dealing with the school budget at Holbrook that really set him apart. He said that he was excited about Norton and that he hoped he would be able to do a good job for the district.
“I’m ready to come to Norton, I want to be in Norton,” he said. “I wish you a lot of luck. It’s a great place with some great people.”