New principal Patrick McGuire is looking to shake things up at Monsignor Scanlan High School.
Although McGuire, 51, will be taking on a new role there as principal, he is no stranger as he graduated and taught at the high school at 915 Hutchinson River Parkway in Throggs Neck.
He started at Scanlan as a religion teacher in 1985, after receiving a Bachelor of Arts in English from St. John’s University, a Master’s degree in Religious Education from Fordham University and a Doctorate of Education degree in higher education administration from Teacher’s College at Columbia University.
Although this will be his first role as a principal, McGuire has had tons of experience in education not only at Scanlan but also as a teacher and administrator at St. John’s Preparatory School, St. John’s University, C.W. Post University, and the Department of Education in Long Island City.
“I think this is a great segway because I am coming from the classroom, plus my experience in administration—it’s a win-win situation,” McGuire said. “It’s just great to be back here.”
It is a year of firsts for the Throggs Neck high school, as the Queens native is the first male principal at the school, the first alumni to become principal, and also the first principal of the school to have a doctorate degree.
The 30-year-veteran educator said he decided to pursue a career in education because he really enjoys working with young adults and college age students.
“I like to see the growth, I like to work with them not only in the classroom but also on service projects which is really deeply rooted in Scanlan education,” he said. “Not only do we have a 50 hour service requirement before they graduate, but I find that more students get involved and they want to help transform their communities and the lives of the people in those communities.”
As the September 4 start of school approaches, McGuire said he hopes to build on programs already existing at Scanlan.
“I want to increase rates of scores on the SAT’s as well as increase the number of students who get an advanced regents diploma,” he said. “That’s all stemming from the work I will do with the faculty and the assistance that they get before school and after school,” McGuire said.
McGuire said he would also like to increase the use of technology.
“Not just the use of smart boards, but the different types of software packages out there to help not only a student that is struggling but also maybe one that is excelling at the same time,” he said.
The new principal said his homecoming is a new beginning for Scanlan.
“As an alum, I come to Scanlan with a different perspective,” he said. “It has come full circle.”
Kirsten Sanchez can be reach via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (718) 742-3394