The honorary grand marshal of this year’s Columbus Day Parade is an educator who has been serving the Morris Park community for over a decade.
Brandon Muccino, an assistant principal for the third and fourth grade at P.S. 83 who has been at the school for 11 years, has been given the honor bestowed upon Italian-American educators.
An eighth grade special education teacher at the school for five years, and also the former head of the school’s technology department, Muccino is entering his second year in administration, and is thrilled to be singled out by the parade committee for this honor.
“I am glad that they are still recognizing Italian-American heritage in what is a predominately Italian-American community,” Muccino said. “I think that it is a great honor to be the honorary grand marshal for what is the second largest Columbus Day parade in New York State. For me, it is a gentle reminder that I should keep up the good work I have been able to do since first arriving at P.S. 83.”
He believes that the parade committee recognized the energy he exudes in working with children, parents and community members, as well as the passion that he has for his job.
“It is obvious to the students and their parents that I love my job and that I don’t try to hide that,” Muccino stated. “I think I learned that passion from my Italian grandfather and father, and it was passed down to me and now I just exude it.”
Prior to his current role as an assistant principal at the school, Muccino transformed the technology department by helping to secure a grant for a new computer lab, created a website that lets parents see lesson plans and other information about what their children are learning in the classroom, and designed a calling system that allows important messages to reach parents via telephone, he said.
While growing up in New Rochelle, New York, Muccino said that his father used to tell him stories of when he lived in Morris Park as a youth. He said was very excited when he was assigned to P.S. 83 because of his dad’s connection to the neighborhood.
“There was always a sense of pride in being an Italian American when I was growing up,” Muccino said. “I am proud now that they are recognizing me as an Italian American who is making a positive contribution to the community.”
During his years at P.S. 83, he has attended nearly every Bronx Columbus Day Parade, and last year the school sent its bulldog mascot, cheerleading and dance teams, and rock band to the march, he said. Muccino’s mother came from Naples, while his father hailed from Abruzzo.
“We have chosen to honor an exemplary educator every year,” said Tony Signorile, parade coordinator. “We had heard through parents in the community that Mr. Muccino has been doing a great job with the kids.” This year’s parade will travel up Morris Park Avenue and Williamsbrige Road on Sunday, October 9