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Bronxville Union Free School District

District Welcomes New Teachers, Interns for 2016-17

Bronxville welcomed new faculty members and college student interns during a two-day orientation, held Aug. 29-30. The group, which brings an array of experience to the district, met with administrators, discussed lesson planning, technology initiatives, policies and procedures, and received a tour of the school and village.

Director of Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Mara Koetke, who encouraged the new faculty members to pursue their ideas and take on risks, said they bring a new perspective to the district that will continue to move its Bronxville Promise vision forward. Professional Development Coordinator Denise Lutter coordinated the mentoring program for the new teachers along with Policy Board Chairperson Toby Gillen, while Policy Board members Pamela Kohlhoff and Dana Landesman helped to facilitate the orientation.

On the first day of orientation, the teachers and interns participated in a challenge that tested their leadership, innovation and critical thinking skills, which are closely aligned with the dispositions of the Bronxville Promise. They collaborated and tested their design and engineering skills by building a marshmallow-topped tower out of spaghetti, tape and string. One group, who took on the challenge by building the tower backwards, ended up with the tallest free-standing structure.

Anthony Vaglica, who returns to the district as an elementary school physical education teacher after being at Horace Greeley High School for two years and serving as a teacher aide and physical education leave replacement at Bronxville for eight years prior to that, said he is looking forward to building new relationships.

“My love for teaching dates back to high school,” said Vaglica, who received his undergraduate degree from Concordia College. “My first mentor was my physical education teacher and one of my coaches for soccer and basketball. That was the first time I felt connected to someone who kept me engaged in school, and with whom I’m still friends.”

He said he’s looking to bring new technology ideas to the district in order to enhance the physical education curriculum. “One thing that I want to get the students to do is to love coming to school as much as I do,” Vaglica said.

Jennifer Campo, a new French and Spanish teacher at the middle school, comes to Bronxville after teaching French for 14 years at the York Preparatory School and then serving for two years as assistant head of school at Ecole Internationale de New York, a French-American bilingual school in Manhattan.

“My calling is in the classroom," Campo said. “I am thrilled to return to teaching. I am looking forward to being part of another school community, which I find so exciting because I get to work with new students and colleagues."

Benjamin Cornish, a new physics and engineering teacher at the high school who graduated from the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia, worked as a research engineer before starting his teaching career at the Bronx High School of Science six years ago.

“I’m mostly looking forward to different challenges and bringing my innovation to either my own classroom or other classrooms,” Cornish said. “I found that’s what I love doing, not only in the classroom, but also [in my] professional career prior to teaching. It was all invention work. I’d love to be able to bring some of that here and implement it in ways unknown at this point.”

In addition to the 18 new faculty members, the district welcomed 19 teacher residents and psychology and technology interns who will work closely with students and faculty.

  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image
  • Bronxville Union Free School District - Image