Paul Gorski joined the Fair Lawn School District as the high school’s principal in July upon the retirement of former principal James Marcella. In a new town and a new school, Gorski has transitioned with ease.
Gorski has over 20 years experience working in public education. He began as a history teacher at Hunterdon Central High School, then held administrative positions in the West Milford School District, and at West Milford High School.
Gorski has acclimated himself with Fair Lawn’s faculty and student body and likes what he’s seen thus far.
“I’ve been a lot of places in my 20 years in the field, and from the time I came here I felt welcome and supported. There is a nice camaraderie among the school, among the students, among different groups of students,” Gorski said.
Fair Lawn High School’s student body boasts 68 clubs and societies that the new principal met at the annual Club Fair on October 5.
The students worked hard leading up to this day to showcase their clubs and draw attention for membership. The work ethic and drive of the students, along with support from teachers, were some of the attributes Gorski admired.
Jeanine Hayek, a Fair Lawn High School Social Studies teacher for 25 years and the current Student Activities Coordinator, has worked under three different principals. As the coordinator, she oversees all the clubs and acts as a liaison between the club network and the administration. Additionally, Hayek helped Gorski with his transition over the summer.
“I gave [Gorski] an overview of the Student Activities program to familiarize him with the master calendar and procedures,” Hayek said.
Gorski took the time to learn about Student Activities and Hayek looks forward to working with him.
“It’s hard to articulate the vastness of our program and the importance of our co-curricular activities, so I’m trying to work in tandem with him to help him understand Student Activities in order to maintain the integrity of our programs,” Hayek said.
Hayek also works directly with the Student Government Association, which acts as the umbrella organization for all of Fair Lawn High School’s clubs.
The Student Government Association helped set up and facilitate Club Fair, which Gorski admired after seeing for the first time.
“I’m excited to work with Student Government because it’s a big organization. There are so many students involved in it. They take their purpose very seriously, and I want to really work with them so they understand not only that they have a voice, but they have a way of shaping what actually happens,” Gorski said.
After only a few months, Gorski has already implemented reform. These changes include increased administrative presence outside the building as students arrive to school in the morning and the hiring of new staff to help facilitate the process. Staff, including Hayek, have recognized and praised these changes.
The transition period is still ongoing, but Gorski has been receptive and open to Fair Lawn High School.
“Everyday I’m trying to learn something new about the school and the community.”
Header credit: patch.com (Fair Lawn Patch)
Thumbnail credit: Fair Lawn High School Twitter account (@FairLawnHSNJ)