The

Phoenixville Area School Board

stayed inside the district in the search for the next superintendent, officially selecting Dr. Maria Schwab, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction at Phoenixville, for the job.

David R. Noyes, superintendent at Phoenixville for seven years, will retire on June 30, 2008, ending his 35-year career in education. The board voted to promote Schwab into the position by a unanimous 9-0 tally at its meeting Monday night.

Her resume includes working as a learning-support teacher at the Chester County Intermediate Unit, serving as a principal in the West Chester Area and Owen J. Roberts school districts, and being director of elementary education for the Unionville Chadds-Ford School District.

Schwab was hired as assistant superintendent in October 2006 after the board, knowing that Noyes' retirement was on the horizon, conducted a statewide search for someone who could potentially be considered for the superintendent position, according to the district's director of human resources, Joseph Anderson.

Noyes, 57, is earning $172,720 on his last year on the job. Schwab is earning $140,365 this year as assistant superintendent, and is negotiating with the school board to determine salary and benefits for her five-year contract as superintendent.

A Charlestown Township resident, Schwab will take over as superintendent on July 1, 2008. Her contract will run through 2013.

- Will Hobson

College-bound high school seniors have less than a week to enter the Beneficial Scholars Program essay contest sponsored by Philadelphia-based Beneficial Bank.

The program, which awards $45,000 in scholarships to six students, is accepting entries until Friday from seniors in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties.

Students are asked to write an essay describing what they think is the most important issue facing their community, and how they would respond to this concern.

The winning writer will receive a $20,000 scholarship, and five runners-up will receive $5,000 scholarships. Judging will be done by a panel of area business and community leaders and educators.

For an entry form, visit

» READ MORE: www.thebeneficial.com

.

- Matt Sandy