IRVINGTON, N.Y. When Kristopher Harrison says public education is in his roots, he means it.
The new Irvington superintendent grew up watching his mother teach preschool and said helping her guided his own career path. Harrison said he remembers walking down and visiting her and sitting there finding myself getting lost in hours at a time running activities with children.
I just immensely enjoy working with people and the idea of being an educator and being able to prepare our children for the future, he said. To be able to really ensure that we provide the best experiences to help craft the next generation to me is just an incredibly rewarding experience.
Harrison replaced Robert Roelle as superintendent of schools in the Irvington Union Free School District at the beginning of July. He has previously served as the superintendent of the Menham Township School District, principal at Maplewood Middle School and principal at Walter O. Krumbiegle Middle School, all in New Jersey.
Harrison received a doctoral degree from the College of Saint Elizabeth, a master's degree from Rutgers University and a bachelors degree from Kean College of New Jersey. He is married with a son heading into second grade.
The New Jersey resident said the move to a New York school district was about an opportunity for growth.
A district like Irvington was very, very appealing because the district is known for success and a high level of community engagement and support of their schools, he said.
Harrison said he looks forward to working with the rest of the school district and the community to create meaningful goals for the district. Several changes, he noted, are already on the radar: adjusting to new teacher evaluations, aligning the district's curriculum to the Common Core Standards, maximizing finances and enhancing school facilities.
We want to continue to raise the bar on [student] achievement, he said. To make sure that we're preparing our children successfully for college and for the work force. We want these school experiences to be meaningful and enriching and to make sure we're providing quality opportunities that reach every child regardless of what their interests or talents may be.
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