READFIELD — The Kents Hill School Board of Trustees has declined to renew Head of School Jeremy LaCasse’s contract, citing “personal and professional reasons,” which means a longtime science teacher and administrator will lead the school next year, said Anna Iredale, the school’s director of communications.

LaCasse will remain in that position until June 30, and Patrick McInerney has been working alongside him as acting head of school since early May. McInerney has worked at Kents Hill since 1992, including the last 10 years as associate headmaster, and will become interim head of school on July 1.

“He’s well equipped to carry us through this transition, and that’s why the Board of Trustees is taking their time in looking for the next head of school,” Iredale said.

LaCasse is teaching at a leadership institute for private school administrators in Colorado this week. His Twitter profile says he is an acting administrator at Cheshire Academy, a boarding school in Connecticut.

LaCasse, who grew up in Augusta, began at Kents Hill School in the summer of 2011. Iredale said two-year contracts are typical for the head of school.

McInerney said LaCasse’s tenure included many successes, including the school hitting an enrollment of 245 students, the most in more than 20 years.


“Jeremy did an excellent job at Kents Hill School and was extremely professional in everything he did,” McInerney said. “The board and he left on very good terms.”

LaCasse succeeded Rist Bonnefond, who retired after 21 years of leading Kents Hill.

As associate headmaster, McInerney was responsible for many of Kents Hill’s day-to-day operations related to classes, dormitories and athletics. He teaches Advanced Placement biology and has coached soccer, skiing and tennis.

McInerney said LaCasse has been getting him up to speed on other aspects of the head of school’s job, such as raising money, working with the trustees and overseeing building projects.

Although a head of school typically travels for much of the summer for fundraising and recruiting, McInerney said the trustees have asked him to stay on campus for continuity during the transition.

Like most of the faculty and staff, McInerney lives on campus. His wife, Cindy, works in admissions but is moving to a job as a tutor at the Akin Learning Center, which opened on campus last year to support students with learning disabilities.

McInerney said he will continue to teach one biology class next year, with support for times when he has to travel. He plans to cut back his coaching duties to tennis only.

The Board of Trustees will establish a search committee for the next head of school when it meets next week in Boston, McInerney said.

Susan McMillan — 621-5645
[email protected]

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