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Principal Panel Helps Future Teachers

Principal Panel Helps Future Teachers

By James McVey

Newburgh – It is not every day that respected individuals of their field take the time to impart some wisdom gained from real world experience onto today’s youth. This year was a renaissance of the community spirit embodied by educators of the Hudson Valley. On Wednesday April 24th, 2019, Sigma Tau Chapter 451 of Kappa Delta Pi (KDP), the international education honor society, held a Principal Panel at Kaplan Library to prepare future teacher candidates. The event was sponsored by KDP and orchestrated by Justin Bourne, Public Relations Officer of KDP. The process involved submitting a resume to obtain a teaching position at one of five schools. Adolescent education, childhood education, and special education positions were all sought after, and the panelists embodied at least one of those areas of expertise themselves.

The panel consisted of five prestigious education administrators: Dr. Andrea Tejedor, assistant superintendent of Highland Falls – Fort Montgomery Central School District, Dr. William Rolon, principal of C.J. Hooker Middle School Goshen, Sean Michel, superintendent of Chester Union Free School District, Aaron Hopmayer, principal of Pine Bush High School, and Robert Glowacki, principal of Horizons-On-The-Hudson elementary school in Newburgh.

Questions that were posed included: “What makes you stand out from the other candidates?”, How would you handle a student that is attempting to sabotage your lesson, and distracting their peers?, “How would you effectively differentiate instruction for diverse learners?”, “How would you utilize technology in the classroom setting?”, “What do you need to know about your students?”, “How reflective are you on yourself, knowing that not every lesson will be successful?”, and “Can you provide a rundown of a typical lesson plan you would implement?”.

Three of the strongest candidates, selected from submitted resumes, were given an opportunity to interview with the panel. Each of the three candidates drew on different experience and teaching philosophy to answer the questions. Education related fieldwork, community volunteering, military experience, and personal philosophy of teaching were all utilized to construct compelling responses to each of the questions.

Room 218 of the Kaplan Library came alive with people passionate about education and for ensuring a bright future for today’s youth. The panel fielded questions from the participants, faculty members, and audience after the conclusion of the final interview. Light refreshments were available while upcoming changes to state standards were discussed, especially those concerning computer literacy how the permeation of all aspects of digital technology into the education process is upon us, and why educators need to reevaluate existing programs and look for candidates who can help ensure that the needs of students are met.

Plans are to bring the event back again in the spring of 2020 with participants agreeing that literacy is no longer enough to efficiently function in society as we grow more digital each day.

Caption 1: Robert Glowacki, Dr. Andrea Tejedor, Sean Michel, Dr. William Rolon, and Aaron Hopmayer (Photo by James McVey)

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