Meet Elizabeth Ridgeway of China Primary School

Join us in welcoming Elizabeth Ridgeway – our new Dean of Students at China Primary School! We are so excited to have her join our team! Let’s get to know her a little better before our school year begins!

What jobs have you had before becoming an administrator? Prior to becoming an administrator, I’ve held many different jobs. After high school, I worked at Pine Tree Camp in Rome as their waterfront director through college. I also interned for Senator Collins in her Augusta office. Once I started my career, I worked in private finance – first doing real estate lending and then business succession and retirement planning. During that time, I realized that my calling was in the field of education, and I’ve worked as a behavioral support tech, an ELL teacher, and I’ve taught kindergarten, second, and third grade across many states.

What are you most excited about for this upcoming year? I am most excited to become part of the China Primary School family and getting to know the staff, students, and community members. It’s truly a magical school that’s loved by all who enter its doors. I’m also excited to go snowshoeing out on the China School Forest trail once the snow flies, but I’m also not wishing away our warm weather!

What do you like to do in your spare time? In my spare time, I love to read. One of my favorite quotes is from Mason Cooley who says, “Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.” I also love a good adventure with my kids. We like to go to the beach, to spend time out on the lake, or going on road trips to see friends and family around the country.

What’s been your best school memory – either as a student or administrator? As a student, my third grade teacher let us build Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory in an empty classroom in our school. We had just finished reading the book, and we created all of the different rooms of the factory, from the chocolate river to the squirrels in the nut room, and gave tours to other classes. Talk about an immersive and memorable literary experience!

Tell us about your family! My family and I live in Benton where we are working to restore an old farm and apple orchard. My husband’s name is Jesse and we have two kids, Jack who is 7 and entering first grade, and Reagan who is soon to be 9 and entering 3rd grade. We have a black and white cat named Willie, and a tabby barn cat named Brunch. We also have a small flock of chickens that joined the farm in 2020 that are all named for famous actresses: Angela, Joan, Goldie, Helen, Uma, Meryl, and Sally.


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