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Early education chief resigns

A top state education official has stepped down from her position amid questions over her enrollment in a program that trains school superintendents.

Sherri Killins, commissioner of the state Department of Early Education and Care, resigned Monday, said Matthew Wilder, a spokesman for the state agency that oversees the department, in an e-mail early Tuesday.

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Killins’s abrupt resignation was first reported by the Boston Herald. The newspaper previously reported that Secretary of Education Matthew Malone was investigating her enrollment in the superintendent training program in Ware, which has taken her away from her official duties in her nearly $200,000-per-year state job.

A phone number listed for Killins in New Haven, where she lives, was not accepting voicemail messages early Tuesday.

Despite the questions surrounding Killins, officials praised her in statements.

“I thank Commissioner Killins for her service and wish her well as she continues her advocacy on behalf of children,” Malone said. JD Chesloff, chair of the early education department’s board, also commended Killins’s “strong advocacy” on behalf of children.

Malone has appointed Undersecretary of Education Tom Weber to replace Killins on an interim basis.

Globe correspondents Jeremy C. Fox and Haven Orecchio-Egresitz contributed to this report. Travis Andersen can be reached at tandersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.
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