Mid-year printed edition: Principal Wilson talks about ideas


Emilia Privat

Principal Tonya Wilson (left) with teachers Meryeme Gashi and Christina Dee in the ground floor hallway.

COLONIAL SCHOOL — So far, Colonial School has had a fantastic and successful year. There have been changes, and some new students have come from all over. Mrs. Tonya Wilson, the principal, has set up goals for the entire school as well.

Did you know that Mrs. Wilson previously taught second, third, fourth and fifth grades? In fact, she taught fourth grade right here at Colonial before she became principal. That is one of the many facts you will learn as you continue to read this article.

The school year is about half over. Colonial has some projects still to come this year that are being created by Mrs. Wilson. One of them is starting a literary magazine. Another is working on redesigning the flow of the playground. And the last idea is creating more opportunities for student responsibility. These are only a few ideas. There will probably be more as the year continues.

What inspires Mrs. Wilson to create these plans? She gets the ideas from visiting other schools, talking to other principals and from books.

Students still have four more months before summer vacation starts. That probably seems like forever for some, but it will go by quicker than they think, particularly if they have great school spirit for the rest of the year. The spirit has been great so far. Now, Spirit Day is every Friday, and many students and teachers have participated by wearing red and white.

“There are many things to love about Colonial,” said Mrs. Wilson in an interview. “I would never change the school spirit that comes with being a Colonial student. The intense pride of Colonial makes the students absolutely love being a member of this school community. It’s the same reason that middle and high school students always return to visit. The adults that work here really care.”

There are some new goals for the school this year.

Goals are set for the school every year. This year, one project Mrs. Wilson has been working on with the teachers is going to grade-level meetings to make sure the school is meeting the new standards and expectations set by the State of New York.

According to Mrs. Wilson, the biggest change this year has been the shift to block scheduling. This kind of scheduling allows the teachers to have common planning time. The principal thinks the change was a good thing.

She said an important part of her job is making sure that all of the students at Colonial are getting along and learning.

“A school with smiling faces is a happy one,” she said.

Some things Mrs. Wilson does every single day are make the morning announcements to the whole school, work in the gym/cafeteria when kids are eating, and speak to students and teachers about different issues.

Colonial is a great school. Each student loves something about his or her elementary school. It might be a subject like science or English or a teacher or even recess. Maybe it’s the friend you play with every single day. Certainly! After all, Colonial is the school “where the friends are,” which is what the school’s motto says.

Even Mrs. Wilson has a  favorite part of her job. She said the thing she enjoys most about being principal is working with teachers and students. She also loves working with curriculum in the different grades, which is really all about what is taught.

Mrs. Wilson, who grew up in Hopewell Junction, N.Y., has a lot of responsibilities at the school. These responsibilities are sometimes hard, but they are also important.

Colonial School is a very fun school where any student can make a friend. Mrs. Wilson does a great job running this school, and anyone can agree it’s been a fantastic year so far.

(This story was originally published in the mid-year printed edition of the Colonial Times.)