Meet Alyssa Sabbatino: Director of Teaching and Learning
Last month we announced that Alyssa Sabbatino had been hired as Director of Teaching and Learning at Schodack and she has now officially started her new role with the school district! For the past two weeks, Ms. Sabbatino has been busy jumping straight into her role and meeting with teachers/staff and families at the school. We arrived to ask her some “get to know you” questions so that the Schodack school community can learn a little more not only about her, but also about this new position in the district.
Tell us a bit about your background and how it brought you to Schodack.
My journey originally began with a job as an English teacher and educational coach. Literacy and the reading program were a big part of my school life during this time.
From there, I rose to Dean and Associate Director, studied many catering and relationship building strategies, and became deeply invested in understanding students, their behavior, and their needs. This balance between curriculum and pedagogical work with developmental and social-emotional work is so important to me. This led to my later work as District Leader for School Improvement in a position that combined both worlds. This led me straight to Schodack, as the position I just started is rooted in both worlds of creating the best program for our Schodack students that we could ever have.
The Director of Teaching and Learning is a new position at Schodack. Can you briefly describe it and what attracted you?
This job is my dream job! This includes developing and developing curricula alongside teachers, collaborating with teachers through professional development, meeting with students and teachers to learn about their needs, and creating a school environment that meets these needs. The role starts with listening to all the stakeholders I can and engaging with so many amazing things that are already happening here, and then just learning what is needed and making it happen.
What do you hope to accomplish in these first weeks/months and what are some of your goals for the rest of the school year?
I start with an entry plan that allows me to meet with all the stakeholder groups I can so that I am able to learn what people need and expect from me.
My main priorities are visibility and links with all these stakeholders. I want to be present and part of their life at school while I learn about their needs and priorities. There is certainly work through grants and professional development that I have already started, and it is very exciting.
What do you want your Schodack colleagues and our Schodack families to know about your work style?
I value input and communication above all else. Decisions should be rooted in what is best for the group, with input and feedback from everyone involved. I need and want to hear from colleagues and families, I welcome that and it motivates me and will always guide my work.
Finally, tell us a bit about life outside of work.
My two children, Daniel (10) and Ava (7) are my life outside of school. They are my favorite part of every day. I recently got married in October and am enjoying married life. Our family is very fond of hiking, we hike weekly and try to discover new waterfalls all over the northeast.
Photography and reading are my biggest other interests. Our family has also participated in many different board games throughout the pandemic, which is so much fun. We have a dog, four cats, two hermit crabs, a gecko and lots of fish. We live in South Colonie and are often here near Schodack to visit different parks. We love it!