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Boyd Marley


Boyd Marley has been the EECS Principal since 2019 where he was previously Assistant Principal. He is a former member of the Maine Legislature and long-time Special Educator with a Masters in Inclusive Education. 

Mr. Marley is married and has three children, two are which are graduates of PPS. He is also a big Red Sox, Patriots, Celtics, and Georgia Bulldogs fan!

Kelly Thornhill
Assistant Principal


Kelly Thornhill has been an educator for over 20 years. She has been an elementary classroom teacher, teacher leader and the assistant principal for the past 6 years at East End Community School. At East End Community School, she has focused on improving chronic absenteeism, implementing restorative practices and embedding a social emotional learning curriculum.

Ms. Thornhill has also implemented the guiding principles of The Opportunity Myth, working to make sure EECS is a school where students have opportunities to work on grade level instruction that is engaging and where students do most of the thinking. In addition, ensuring that EECS is a place where teachers truly believe students can meet grade level instruction. Ms. Thornhill's mantra is "You always have a choice, so choose kindness."

Bill Sumner
Administrative Secretary


Bill Sumner, a native of Reading, Massachusetts, has been EECS' Lead Secretary since 2015 and handles everything from answering the phones and enrolling students to making excellent coffee and blasting Phish in the Main Office whenever possible.

Mr. Sumner lives in Portland with his wife, daughter, two cats, and five Barred Rock Chickens.     

Destiny Plummer
Administrative Secretary


Destiny Plummer has been our School Year Secretary
since 2013 and manages everything from calling home
about absences to stepping in as a second nurse
at a moment's notice! 

Ms. Plummer has five children and two grandchildren
and lives in the Gray/New Gloucester area.

Shirah O'Connell
School Nurse


Shirah O'Connell has been our School Nurse since 2018. She received a B.S. in Athletic Training in 2000 from Colby-Sawyer College and a B.S. in Nursing in 2008 from University of Buffalo. In 2022, she became a Nationally Certified School Nurse. One of her favorite parts of the school day is greeting the students upon arrival. It always makes her smile!  

Nurse Shirah lives in South Portland with her husband, two sons, and three dogs. She also enjoys coaching and watching her sons play soccer.

Amanda Lowe
SEL Coach


Amanda Lowe received her Bachelors of Science in Childhood Studies at Plymouth State University. Her career in Behavioral Special Education began at Spurwink Services in 2009 and she has since taught in elementary and middle schools in the greater Portland area.

Liza Brown
Social Worker


Liza Brown received her MSW degree from the Smith College School for Social Work. Her career in social work spans over two decades in community mental health,
in-patient and school settings in areas of advocacy, clinical research, family systems support, trauma, stress and distress management, and multicultural competency. 

Dawn Girsch
School Counselor


Dawn Girsch loves being a School Counselor. She gets the opportunity to work with all the students and staff at EECS. Through her many years in education, Ms. Girsch has worked in settings from early childhood through college but admits there is something special about Elementary Schools.