Bishop Frank J. Caggiano has announced the appointment of Steven F. Cheeseman, Ed. D. of East Moriches, Long Island, as Superintendent of Schools for the Diocese of Bridgeport.
The diocese includes Bethel, Bridgeport, Brookfield, Danbury, Darien, Easton, Fairfield, Georgetown, Greenwich, Monroe, New Canaan, New Fairfield, Newtown, Norwalk, Redding Ridge, Ridgefield, Riverside, Shelton, Sherman, Stamford, Stratford, Trumbull, Weston, Westport and Wilton.
Cheeseman currently serves as associate superintendent of schools in the Diocese of Rockville Centre, Long Island, and will assume his new responsibilities in Bridgeport effective June 30.
He will be responsible for more than 9,000 students and 1,000 faculty members in the 31 elementary and high schools sponsored by the Diocese of Bridgeport. He will also chair the Diocesan Education Commission formed by Bishop Caggiano in 2014 to reorganize Catholic education and lead a strategic planning process, now underway, to insure its viability and vitality in the future.
Cheeseman succeeds Sister Mary Grace Walsh, ASCJ, who accepted the newly created position of Provost for Education, Evangelization and Catechesis of the Archdiocese of Hartford in December 2015.
“I am pleased to announce that our new superintendent is a man of great faith along with being a superb and innovative educator. At a time when our schools are taking major steps in planning for the future, we are fortunate to draw upon his leadership skills and profound understanding of the value of Catholic education,” said Bishop Caggiano.
The bishop said that Cheeseman has worked at every level of Catholic education from teacher to principal and system administrator and he brings extensive experience to the diocesan post. “He has been responsible for professional development, worked with boards, and negotiated on behalf of the diocese in the collective bargaining agreements with the diocesan high school teacher association. These skills will serve him well in his new role as leader of education in the diocese.”
While serving as associate superintendent for Rockville Centre, Cheeseman was responsible for the development and implementation of diocesan-wide strategic planning along with marketing and branding efforts. He also coordinated the implementation of diocesan curriculum and worked with administrators to ensure student growth and success through data driven analysis and planning.
“As a leader in Catholic Education I truly believe that we need Catholic schools now more than ever. Our schools must combine a clear and consistent focus on the Catholic faith and tradition along with a commitment to academic excellence,” Cheeseman said.
“With this as our focus, we can work to create a generation of young people who leave our schools academically strong and prepared to use the framework of faith as the lens with which to think critically about the world around them,” said Cheeseman.
Cheeseman earned a doctorate in Educational Leadership & Technology from Dowling College, a Professional Diploma in School District Administration also from Dowling, an MA in Liberal Arts & Sciences from SUNY/Empire State College and a BA in History/Secondary Education from St. Joseph’s College, Patchogue, NY. He is a certified teacher and School District Administrator.
Cheeseman has been an adjunct professor at Fordham University Graduate School of Education and St. Joseph’s College, Patchogue. Earlier in his career he served as an Assistant Director of Religious Education and Youth Minister in his parish.
Cheeseman and his wife, Danielle, are parishioners at St. John the Evangelist in Center Moriches, Long Island and currently make their home in East Moriches. They are the parents of Emily (fifth grade), Christina (ninth grade) and Steven (eleventh grade). They look forward to relocating to Fairfield County in the coming months.
The diocesan school system serves students in grades Pre-K through 12 in 31 Catholic schools in the cities and suburbs throughout Fairfield County. There are 25 elementary schools, five high schools and one special education school.
Fifty percent of diocesan elementary schools have received the Blue Ribbon Schools of National Excellence, and 99% of diocesan high school graduates have earned admission to 300 colleges and universities nationwide.
In 2015, the new Bishop Scholarship Fund doubled financial aid in the form of scholarships to elementary school families by distributing over $2.2 million to more than 1,500 students, including 300 new students in the elementary schools. High school students in Catholic schools throughout the diocese are eligible to apply for scholarships this year. The largest source of support for the Bishop’s Scholarship Fund is the Annual Catholic Appeal.
For more information about Catholic schools in Fairfield County, visit bridgeportdiocese.com, or call 203-416-1380.