New Hamilton Ave Principal is Founder of East Hartford International Magnet School

Cindy Rigling has been appointed the new principal of Hamilton Avenue School, effective July 1, 2015.

Rigling replaces Cynthia Womack, who arrived at Ham Ave School in 2010 and planned the school’s transition a STEM magnet theme.

Womack announced her resignation back in January.

An educator for 27 years, Ms. Rigling comes to Greenwich from her current position in East Hartford where she is the founding Principal the International Magnet School for Global Citizenship, a lottery-based, elementary magnet school focused on rigorous, inquiry-based learning in order to close achievement gaps between and among student sub groups.

In 2011, International Magnet School for Global Citizenship became a fully authorized International Baccalaureate World School and received the 2014 School of Excellence Award from Magnet Schools of America for demonstrating “a high commitment to academic standards, curriculum innovation, desegregation/diversity efforts, specialized teaching staffs, and parent and community involvement.”

“It is great news for Hamilton Avenue students, staff and families, and the entire district, that Ms. Rigling has accepted our offer to be the new Hamilton Avenue School principal,” Superintendent McKersie said. “She has been widely lauded for her leadership in launching the International Magnet School in Greater Hartford.”

“I believe wholeheartedly in the value of inquiry-based learning at the elementary level, and look forward to working with the school staff and families as we implement the STEM theme,” Ms. Rigling said.

Administrative candidates are selected after a comprehensive search and appointment process, which includes widespread recruitment efforts, multiple interviews with school and District administrators, teachers, and parents, as well as extensive reference and background checks. Principal appointments also include a site visit.

Hamilton Avenue School teacher Kim Papa participated on the interview committee and attended the site visit to IMS.

“During the interview process, Ms. Ringling demonstrated outstanding knowledge of inquiry based instruction, which will be a tremendous asset as Hamilton Avenue moves to becoming a STEM school,” Papa said. “Administrators, parents and teachers in Hartford all spoke of her commitment to creating a positive school community with a clear vision of raising student achievement.”

Ms. Rigling began her career in education providing support programs and counseling services for children and families at the Klingberg Family Day Program in New Britain, CT (1988-1990), the Boys’ Village Family Services in Milford, CT (1990-1992) and the Northwest Village School in Plainville, CT (1993-1998.) From 1998 to 2001 she worked at the Thomaston Center School in Thomaston, CT, first as a School Counselor, Grade 4-6 and 9-12, then as Head Teacher for Grades 4-6. In 2001, Ms. Rigling took on her first administrator assignment as Principal of the Webb School, an alternative K-8 school in Cheshire, CT.

Rigling served as Assistant Principal/Acting Principal at Pearson Middle School in Winsted, CT from 2003 to 2005, and Principal at the John J. Allison, Jr. CREC Polaris Center, an alternative middle/high school (Grades 6-12) from 2005 to 2008.

In 2008, Ms. Rigling was chosen by CREC to create a new lottery-based elementary magnet school in the greater Hartford area. As Founding Principal of the International Magnet School for Global Citizenship, Ms. Rigling launched an award-winning inquiry-based program aimed at closing gaps in achievement between urban and suburban students.

Rigling received a BA in Psychology from State University Center at Binghamton, Binghamton, NY in 1986. She recieved a Master of Education degree in Counseling and School Psychology from Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA in 1988. She received  a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies in Educational Leadership from Central Connecticut State University, New Britain in 2001.

See also:

Cynthia Womack, Principal at Ham Ave School Gives Notice