Marisa Ferrara started in her new role as assistant principal at Greenville May 1, a position that had never existed at either of Edgemont’s two elementary schools.
With enrollment growing — 564 students attend Greenville, up from about 450 in 2006 — an increase in administrative staff was needed.
Ferrara’s main responsibilities as assistant principal will include helping with budgetary matters, supervising teacher aides, creating and overseeing the school’s new arrival, dismissal and safety procedures at the school.
“Many of you know Ms. Ferrara and your children have been the lucky beneficiaries of her skills as an educator,” wrote Greenville Principal Jennifer Allen in an email to parents. “I look forward to everyone getting to know her and to her working with the entire student body and staff to contribute her considerable talents to moving us forward as a school and as a community.”
Ferrara, 44, has been teaching at Greenville for the past 13 years as a reading specialist, helping children “develop into lifelong learners” and “find joy” in learning, she said.
“As a reading specialist, the highlight was always when young children themselves can realize they can read,” said Ferrara, who currently has a son at EHS and two daughters who graduated from the school. “The joy and the lighting up of their face … that magic when they crack the code … made being a reading specialist really, really special.”
Although she will miss being a reading specialist, Ferrara is excited to serve in the inaugural assistant principal position. The district is still working to officially define the responsibilities. Nicole Rosee will be taking over Ferrara’s old position as an interim reading teacher.
“It’s amazing that I will be in the same school — and I will see my students day after day, but in a different role,” said Ferrara.
Throughout her tenure in Greenville, Ferrara has seen the school population grow substantially, adding almost 110 kindergarten through sixth-grade students in 13 years since she started there. She believes people are drawn to the schools because of the district’s excellence and good reputation.
“Ms. Ferrara’s teaching and leadership over her past 13 years in Greenville demonstrate that she possesses the many qualities and characteristics that make her extremely well suited for this position,” said Allen.
Ferrara still hopes to use her student-centered approach in her new position to help students enjoy learning outside of the school environment.
“The heart of my approach is to make sure instruction is always student centered,” said Ferrara. “Content is important, but teaching children to know themselves as learners is key because that will inspire them to learn, be creative and learn and collaborate with peers.”
— With reporting by Valerie Abrahams