New VHS Principal Named


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Josh Cogdill, the new principal at Verona High School, with Brookdale Principal Rich Rampolla at the BOE meeting.
Josh Cogdill (left), the new principal at Verona High School, with Brookdale Principal Rich Rampolla at the BOE meeting.
The Verona Board of Education approved the hiring of Josh Cogdill, an assistant principal in the Westwood Regional School District, as the new principal at Verona High School.

Cogdill will be succeeding Glenn Cesa, who is stepping into a new role as director of athletics and the head of a district-wide initiative for health services and peer leadership programs.

Superintendent Rui Dionisio noted at the BOE meeting that Cogdill had been one of nearly 100 applicants for the position and had been through a rigorous interview process that included meeting with both high school staff and students. “Throughout the interview process, Mr. Cogdill has expressed the belief that all children can be successful if nurtured in a student-centered environment,” Dionisio said in a statement sent to parents after the meeting. “Mr. Cogdill will be leading Verona High School with a resume where innovation, inclusion, and opportunities for students have been at the cornerstone of his professional contributions.”

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In additional to being an assistant principal at Westwood’s Junior/Senior high school in Bergen County, he was also the supervisor of applied technology and business. “Mr. Cogdill was directly responsible for redesigning and modernizing the Applied Technology Department to be a S.T.E.A.M. centered environment where students were engaged in experiential, project-based learning, using the engineering design process, incorporating modern technologies such as 3D printers, laser cutters, CAD and robotics whereby students made their learning tangible,” Dionisio wrote. “Mr. Cogdill has a proven record of creating and fostering a data-driven, student centered environment where he has supported the coordination of improvement initiatives in the areas of student intervention, grading and assessment.”

Cogdill had previously been an assistant principal at Randolph High School in Morris County, where he also served as the supervisor of Family and Consumer Science. He was the dean of students at North Brunswick High School and taught business courses in finance and Web design early in his career.

A graduate of Pope John XXIII High School in Sussess County, Cogdill earned a bachelors of science degree in business administration at Ramapo College and a masters in education leadership at New Jersey City University. He currently resides in Cranford with his wife and two elementary school-age sons.

Cogdill, whose starting salary will be $130,000, will be at VHS on Thursday to meet with staff and students. There will be a meet and greet for the entire community on Wednesday, June 17, at 7 p.m. in the VHS Media Center. Cogdill starts August 1.

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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected]


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