The Portsmouth School Committee unanimously voted to appoint Jeff Schoonover, chairman of the Portsmouth High School science department, as the new on Tuesday night.
The position previously included the title of "assistant superintendent," but this was changed last year.
The position was previously held by Colleen Jermain, who stepped down in October to accept a position with Providence schools.
Schoonover, a resident of Somerset, MA, has served at for 11 years, including nine years as chairman of the science department. He previously served as a teacher for the Dighton Rehoboth Regional School District.
A science teacher at the high school, he holds a bachelor's degree and master's degree in physics from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth. He recently graduated from Bridgewater State University, receiving a master's degree in education leadership.
He has served as curriculum writer for a national science foundation project; has taught other professional courses offered through the East Bay Education Collaborative; and has been an appointed member of the Rhode Island State Leadership Team for the Next Generation of Science Standards.
He has participated in many statewide advisory committees, including as chairman of the NEASC Steering Committee, member of the PK-16 Advisory Committee on Science and NECAP Science Item Review Committee.
Within the Portsmouth school district, he has served on the RTL Steering Committee, Alternative Assessment Steering Committee and the School Improvement Team.
Schoonover has also served as a visiting lecturer for the physics department at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth and at Bridgewater State College.
In December 2010, he received the .