Trumbull schools head takes leave, retires early for personal reasons
TRUMBULL — School Supt. Gary Cialfi has taken a leave of absence, effective immediately. Former Trumbull Supt. Ralph Iassogna, Cialfi’s predecessor, has taken over as acting superintendent.
Cialfi, who already had announced his retirement effective June 30, told the Board of Education his leave was for personal reasons and would last until his retirement date. The board formally accepted his request at a special meeting Jan. 6.
On Monday night the board informed school parents of the change in a two-paragraph announcement.
“Dr. Gary Cialfi has announced his retirement effective June 30, 2020, after serving as our Superintendent of Schools for the past seven years. Dr. Cialfi has decided to take a leave of absence for personal reasons until his retirement date, which the Board has approved. We want to thank Gary for everything he has accomplished for the students of Trumbull. We wish him the very best in all future endeavors.
“We are in the process of searching for a replacement. In the interim, until a permanent Superintendent is hired, our former Superintendent of Schools, Ralph M. Iassogna, will be serving as Acting Superintendent. Please join us and welcome Ralph until a permanent successor to Dr. Cialfi is appointed.”
Reached Tuesday morning, board Chairman Lucinda Timpanelli said she and the other members were grateful for all Cialfi had accomplished in his tenure.
“He has been a champion of education in our community,” she said.
Cialfi had been superintendent since 2013 and had previously served as curriculum director and assistant superintendent under Iassogna. The search for his replacement had already begun before the announcement that he was leaving effective immediately.
Iassogna, who has served as interim superintendent on Brookfield and Region 15 (Middlebury and Southbury) since leaving the Trumbull schools in 2013, said he had been approached last week about returning to Trumbull.
“It actually happened pretty quickly,” he said. “On Thursday [Board of Education attorney] Floyd Dugas asked me about the possibility of coming to Trumbull on an interim basis. I said I would be interested as long as Gary was leaving on a positive note.”
Three days later he received word that Cialfi had taken his leave, he said.
“I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “Trumbull has always had a lot of positives when it comes to education and with the dedicated staff and motivated student body, there’s a lot to be excited about.