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Robert V. Antonucci, the superintendent of schools in Falmouth, Mass., last week was selected as the Bay State's commissioner of education.

He succeeds Harold Raynolds Jr., who resigned last summer in protest of the declining education budget.

One of three finalists for the post, Mr. Antonucci was not the first candidate chosen by the state education board's search committee. That committee had recommended Ralph Sloan, the schools superintendent in Norwalk, Conn., but some members of the full board balked at the selection. A special committee was then formed to reconsider the two candidates as well as the possibility of reopening the search.

Mr. Antonucci will take responsibility for K-12 education and a state department that are expected to undergo significant change as state officials and business leaders forge a major reform package.

The executive director of the National Committee for Citizens in Education, William Rioux, is stepping down after a 19-year affiliation with the group.

Mr. Rioux, a co-founder of the group with Carl Marburger and Stanley Salett in 1973, has been its first executive director since 1989.

Mr. Rioux plans to leave the Washington-based organization on June 30. A search is under way for a successor.

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