By: Nicole Kazmierczak
For students wondering who the new smiling face is in the main office, new Assistant Principal. Mr. Gray has recently joined our administrative staff at Williamsville East High School, and we spoke with him about his feelings thus far as well as a bit of background on his history in education.
Mr. Gray began his educational career in upstate New York as a social studies teacher. From Upstate New York, he traveled to Brooklyn and then Western New York continuing to teach social studies. When he ventured to Grand Island, he established himself as Vice Principal. Finally, landing at Williamsville East, he is now holding the position of Assistant Principal. Transitioning to east has been very easy, according to Mr. Gray. “There are challenges and bumps with every new experience, but the students and staff here at East have made this a very smooth transition,” Gray stated.
Mr. Gray’s initial impressions of East have been nothing short of exceptional, and students and faculty alike have positive messages for the new Assistant Principal.
“Welcome to our school!” Senior Suhina Kanapathipillai said. “You’ll fit right in—we’re very accepting here.” And Senior Sarah Bargnesis added, “We’re happy to have you here and can’t wait for a great year with you!”
In the short weeks he has been with us, he has noticed various things about the school that have only further enthused and excited him about the year ahead. As the culture at East is one often viewed as unique, we inquired how Mr. Gray was taking in the new setting. There are many features of East that tend to stick out, such as the open classrooms and our programs.
However, Mr. Gray noticed something which is often much more telling of a school than its physical qualities. He felt that the most interesting thing about our school by far was the quality of the people at Williamsville East.
“The quality of the people, from the students and teachers to the custodial staff and administration, has been astounding. There is such a positive culture created by each and every person, one that has made me feel as though I am truly a part of this family at East.”
Indeed, there is a tight-knit feeling among the students and staff at East High School. That’s why senior Kathleen Kalicharan’s advice is to embrace the unique culture here at East. “Be open to new ideas and be yourself,” she said. “East is a welcoming place.” And Art teacher Mrs. Wilson wants Mr. Gray to “enjoy Williamsville East as much as we do.”
Mr. Gray emits this attitude of positivity and enthusiasm, expressing his excitement to work with students and staff to make Williamsville East an even better place to be.
Before Mr. Gray worked his way up to this point, he had started from high school knowing what he wanted to do for a career. “I had always envisioned myself working with kids,” Gray explained. “I knew that I wanted to make a difference in kids’ lives, and now as the Assistant Principal I still get to do that but on a larger scale.” From his long line of credentials in teaching and administration, it’s clear that Mr. Gray has certainly succeeded in his path to inspiring and making a difference in the lives of children all over New York State.
As we continue the school year and beyond, Mr. Gray is sure to be a new friendly face to look for around East High school. We are all as excited as Mr. Gray to start off the year on a great note and keep the positive attitude throughout the upcoming school year.