The Massapequa School District is welcoming 63 new teachers for the 2020-21 school year who enter with great enthusiasm. Each school has at least three new teachers, with as many as 12 at McKenna Elementary School.
New faculty members run the gamut from elementary to middle school to high school teachers and span multiple subject areas. The group includes gifted and talented program teachers, librarians, psychologists, reading specialists, social workers, special education teachers and speech therapists.
The large group of new teachers this year follows a higher than usual number of retirements in June. Some are leave replacements and others have previously worked in the district and are moving into permanent roles.
Dr. Thomas Fasano, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, said that the new teachers represent “the very best” of candidates who went through a very thorough and rigorous hiring process. To help support their transition to Massapequa schools, the district held an extensive four-day new teacher orientation program at Massapequa High School from Aug. 18 to 21.
The program included welcoming remarks from Superintendent Lucille Iconis and Board of Education President Kerry Wachter, an introduction to technology tools and resources, overviews of curriculum, professional development and special education, breakout groups and meetings with department supervisors and building administrators. In a sign of the times, new teachers had to wear masks during orientation and complete a daily health questionnaire.
Jaclyn Scorce, a new fifth-grade teacher at McKenna Elementary School, said she particularly enjoyed the presentation on technology because she knows that it is one of the best ways to engage today’s students in learning. She wants to give her students access to many different digital tools throughout the year to see what they are capable of creating.
Erin Mosier, a Massapequa High School graduate, will return to her alma mater to teach history to 10th, 11th and 12th graders. After having worked as a substitute and leave replacement teacher, this is her first permanent position. Recognizing this will not be a typical school year, she brings an open mind and a readiness to adapt to changes.
“It’s exciting and it’s a very interesting time to go into teaching. You have to be flexible,” she said. “It’s really rewarding to give back to the students at the school that built me and helped me find my love for education.”
—Submitted by the Massapequa School District