Hawthorne Principal Named Assistant Superintendent
Come Aug. 1, Vincent McHale will oversee the district’s Office of Curriculum and Instruction
Hawthorne Elementary School Principal Vincent McHale has been appointed Assistant Superintendent of Schools for Curriculum and Instruction, a role once held by current Superintendent Barbara Pinsak.
Pinsak said a field of “well-qualified” applicants faced a two-level interview process over the course of several weeks. Candidates had to do a presentation during the first level and take part in a two-hour, in-depth interview during the second level.
“We think he’s the best for the role,” said Pinsak, referring to McHale. “He has building experience, he’s continuing in his education, he has a proven record of great communication with parents and community members. He’s offered great supervision and oversight to students. He’s strong with technology, good with working with data, and he has a tremendous work ethic.”
McHale will take on the new role Aug. 1, with a board-approved salary of $150,000, pro-rated for the 2011-2012 school year, according to Business Administrator Robert Finger. His appointment was made at Wednesday's Board of Education meeting.
As assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, McHale will collect and analyze data to ensure consistency among schools and grade levels.
“He’ll be overseeing the teaching and learning of the district to make sure we’re all speaking the same language and moving forward,” Pinsak said.
McHale will remain as Hawthorne's principal until Aug. 1. Pinsak said the district already is advertising for the principal post.
“I intend for the principal position to be filled before school starts,” she said. “That’s why we’re advertising now. It’s important to find someone talented and who is a good fit and aligned with the district’s goals.”
McHale was principal at Hawthorne for five years. Prior to that role, he served as a teacher for 10 years at Whittier Elementary and Thomas Jefferson Middle School.
He received his bachelor’s degree in English from Montclair State University. He holds two master’s degrees: one in corporate and public communications from Seton Hall University and one in educational leadership from Caldwell College. He’s finishing up his doctorate in educational leadership from Seton Hall.
“Teaneck has always offered its students amazing learning opportunities, and I will ensure that they’ll continue to have the best learning environment,” McHale said.
In the fall, McHale’s job duties also will include overseeing instructional technology – which would appear to be familiar territory to him because he’s served as a technology-resource teacher for the district in past years.
During his summers as a teacher, McHale said he worked as a senior trainer for Intel Corporation where he learned how technology can be used as a learning tool in the classroom. After each summer, he would apply the skills he learned from Intel within the district. He said he would encourage teachers to develop instructional unit plans that aligned to current state standards and follow up with projects that included, for example, PowerPoint presentations.
Among the long list of qualities that Pinsak said she admired in McHale, one included his ability to make himself accessible to students, parents and members of the community. McHale said that won’t change in his new role.
“I want to be able to make sure students develop in a great learning environment,” McHale said. “I will continue to be approachable and work collaboratively with parents.”