Dr. Robert Shaps to be New Superintendent

A photograph of Dr. Robert Shaps

Dr. Robert Shaps has been selected to be the next Superintendent of the Oyster River Cooperative School District.

Dr. Robert Shaps Selected as New Superintendent of Oyster River Cooperative School District 

DURHAM — The Oyster River Cooperative School District School Board is pleased to announce that Dr. Robert Shaps has been selected to be the new Superintendent of the Oyster River Cooperative School District.   

Dr. Shaps was selected by the board after a months-long process in which a Screening Committee, comprised of various district stakeholders, consulted members of the school community about the qualities they wanted to see in a new superintendent.

The Screening Committee narrowed the search to three finalists, who visited the district, attended candidate forums at the Oyster River Middle School, and were interviewed in person from Nov. 30 to Dec. 4. 

Community members were also invited to provide feedback about each finalist, which was collected via online surveys that were posted on the district’s website.  

Dr. Shaps has served a distinguished 20-year career leading public schools in Massachusetts and New York, most recently as Superintendent of Schools of the Mamaroneck Union Free School District in Mamaroneck, N.Y. His work has focused on providing positive educational experiences for students by creating authentic learning opportunities with connections to the broader world, fostering innovation, promoting inclusive learning environments, and building a shared vision of excellence within the district and the wider community. During his career, Dr. Shaps has demonstrated the capacity and ability to build consensus, promote collaboration, and orient a system to move forward thoughtfully and effectively.   

“The School Board is thrilled to welcome Dr. Shaps to the Oyster River Cooperative School District. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience that will be central to our continued growth and success as a District,” shared Denise Day, School Board Chair.   

In response to his selection, Dr. Shaps stated, “I am honored and grateful for the privilege to serve as the next superintendent for the Oyster River Cooperative School District. I eagerly anticipate collaborating with dedicated educators as we strive to perpetuate the tradition of excellence in teaching and learning, ensuring that every student not only succeeds but thrives.”  

Dr. Shaps added, “I am excited about the prospect of leading by first learning — understanding the invaluable work of administrators and faculty. My commitment extends to engaging with students, parents, faculty, the Board, and the community in thoughtful conversations about the future of ORCSD. Together, we will chart a course that ensures success, growth, and fulfillment for all.”  

Dr. Shaps will start on July 1, 2024. He will succeed Superintendent Dr. James C. Morse Sr., who is retiring in June 2024 after 12 years of dedicated service to the Oyster River community.