Photo courtesy of the Massapequa School District
It was motivational start of the school year for more than 600 teachers and administrators who gathered in the Massapequa High School auditorium on Aug. 30 for Superintendent’s Conference Day. Dr. William Brennan, who became superintendent on July 1, gave his first address to the entire community of Massapequa educators and sought to inspire them to make a positive difference in the lives of students.
“We all have an opportunity to impact and change kids’ lives,” he said, reminding teachers how much they matter. “Every single day is an opportunity.”
Dr. Brennan attributed his successful career in education to the teachers who believed in him and focused on strengths. He said he will be a visible superintendent, regularly visiting schools and classrooms so he and his administrative team can provide the resources support needed for teachers and students.
“Listen, Learn, Lead” is his guiding principle as he sets the course for one of Nassau County’s largest school districts. Dr. Brennan spoke of the importance of building relationships and encouraged teachers to form strong connections with their students and also with their colleagues. He looks to foster a collaborative environment where everyone works together to solve complex challenges. Students and teachers will be “at the table” to ensure that all voices are heard.
Dr. Brennan said that the world changes at such as fast pace, which is reflected in education because teachers must prepare their students for anything. Important values in the district will be creativity, innovation, leadership, flexibility and resiliency, he added.
After his appointment in early March Dr. Brennan toured every building, and he shared a few of the meaningful interactions he had with students. Over the past two months, he visited all of the summer programs and was struck by the year-round opportunities for Massapequa students.
“It’s great to be a Chief,” Dr. Brennan said.
Board of Education President Kerry Wachter, Massapequa Federation of Teachers President Malcolm Gilbert and PTA Coordinating Council President Shanon Tranchina also addressed the crowd. Ms. Wachter said everyone has an important role to play in the district. The board and the administrators set the vision, mission and goals and develops a plan to get there, while it’s the teachers and support staff who put the plan into practice every day and prepare Massapequa Chiefs who are prepared for life. Mr. Gilbert also emphasized the importance of building connections with students and, noting teacher shortages affecting other states, encouraged the faculty to promote the own profession and inspire the teachers of tomorrow.