One is new, one made permanent, and a third has yet to be assigned CENTRAL COUNTY -- Arnold * Broadneck * Severna Park * Crownsville * Millersville

PRINCIPAL CHANGES AT THREE SCHOOLS

September 02, 1993|By Angela Winter Ney | Angela Winter Ney,Staff Writer

One central county school opened with a new principal yesterday, another had a nearly new principal and a third was waiting for a new principal to be appointed.

Broadneck High lost its principal in August when Larry Knight retired after 38 years in the county school system, the last dozen at Broadneck's helm. A new principal has yet to be assigned, school officials said.

Meanwhile, Bill Callaghan was greeting more than 900 students at Old Mill Middle North without the jitters he expected to have on his first day as principal.

"I was here extra early this morning, but the transition was much easier than expected," due in part to two "terrific assistant principals," he said yesterday.

And Kim Bobola, who took over as acting principal at Severna Park Elementary last year when Patricia Emory, the former principal, was arrested on drug charges, began her first day as the permanent replacement for Mrs. Emory, "continuing to keep our focus on the children," she said.

"When I came here, I found that I was immersed in an experience in which I grew and the people with whom I worked grew, and how we grew was by coming together to focus on children's needs during a difficult time," she says.

Mrs. Emory was placed on leave after her arrest last October and never returned to the school, even though the charges against her were dropped. She now is working in an administrative position.

Ms. Bobola was named the permanent principal at Severna Park in July, the same time Mr. Callaghan was chosen to take over Old Mill Middle North for Richard Shriner, who retired.

Mr. Callaghan, who grew up in Severna Park, said he hopes to develop interdisciplinary teaching teams to allow teachers in one subject to coordinate lessons with teachers in others. For example, sixth-graders studying the Sumerians in Social Studies could do art projects that resemble Sumerian art, he explained.

"That's really the heart and soul of a middle school, and if we can produce teams of teachers that work with the same students, we can interlace the disciplines," he said. "The information is reinforced multiple times. You get more bang for your buck."

Mr. Callaghan, 47, graduated in December 1968 from the University of Maryland with a degree in physical education and began teaching in Anne Arundel County three days later.

He spent 15 years in the classroom before moving to administrative positions, then went back to Maryland to complete a doctoral degree in educational policy planning and administration.

"Only my adviser and my mother finished reading my dissertation," he jokes. "It was BORING."

But his first principalship is "exciting; it's even fun," he says.

He isn't worried about teacher response to the interdisciplinary programs, Mr. Callaghan said.

"I've moved from school to school, and I know it's hard to accept change, but I'm asking people for more effort. When you come down to it, after a while [the interdisciplinary approach] ceases to be more work and in some ways becomes less. You have other people on your team supporting you."

Ms. Bobola, 36, said she wants to use the support she and the other teachers developed last year to help the school community rebuild after the anguish of last winter.

FTC Ms. Bobola steered the school through the controversy created by the charges against Mrs. Emory. Friendly but cautious, she chooses her statements carefully, pausing for long moments to think before she speaks.

Yesterday, she welcomed about 300 students to the school's kindergarten through fifth grade. The school also has programs for primary grade children who have autism and preschool children who are hearing-impaired.

She said she hopes to develop thinking-skills programs for her students and implement language arts programs that are "organized around themes and extend problem-solving experiences for our children."

In addition, the school has obtained more computer software, and students will make greater use of computers in each academic area this year, she said.

Ms. Bobola, a Pennsylvania native who studied at Towson State University, Johns Hopkins University and the University of Maryland, has worked as a classroom teacher, a gifted-and-talented resource teacher and an assistant principal at two other schools. She also has been an education specialist at IBM.

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