Former high school principal named new assistant superintendent
Nanine McLaughlin was recently named the new assistant superintendent for human resources and leadership development. McLaughlin was most recently Garden City High School principal, a position she held for 11 years, following a six-year stint as principal of Deer Park High School. She takes over for Maureen Appiarius, who recently retired after four years in the position when it was previously known as the assistant superintendent for personnel. For McLaughlin, her time as principal is already paying dividends in the early weeks of her new position.
“That experience as a principal is super helpful here. The high school principal is like a mini-human resources. So there are a lot of things I did there that I need to do here, obviously on a much grander scale. But really, it’s that perspective piece because the principals interface with this office all the time. I think they appreciate that I can appreciate what they do because I did it for a long time,” she said. “Teachers appreciate that you walked in their shoes. It’s funny, because in all my years as principal, I never forgot what it was like to be a teacher. I never did. That’s why they’re all excited that I’m here because I’m not going to forget what it’s like to be a principal.”
She’s equally excited about working alongside and under current superintendent, Dr. Kusum Sinha.
“I really feel good about supporting [Dr. Sinha’s] vision and philosophy. Being able to do it at the high school was great, but we’re talking district-wide ability to help, support and make things better,” she said. “How could I possibly not take this position?”
Sinha is also a fan of what McLaughlin brings to the table.
“I am pleased to have Mrs. Nanine McLaughlin join the central leadership team as our new superintendent of human resources and leadership development. Her accomplishments as the high school principal have been impressive. In her new role, she will have a greater impact throughout the district. She is already making a difference in a short amount of time.”
For McLaughlin, helping fellow Garden City administrators and educators strive and succeed is a primary goal for her in this new role.
“My number one short-term goal is to really systematize this office and make it work really smart. Kusum changed the name to ‘human resources’ for a reason,” she said. “A big part of my role and my goal is to have people want to call here and come here and see this as a place where they can get help and support. The leadership development piece of it has to do with a lot of administrators in this district who are really great—we can all be better. I want to help support them because I feel that’s something we haven’t done the best job of. We do it really well with teachers but with administrators, not as much. We want to promote their growth. Kusum is all about that and what I will be doing to help people grow, be their best and if they want, to move up. I just want to help them grow and learn. That hasn’t really been the focus. I just feel like we want this to be a more friendly and supportive department. We want to put the ‘human’ in human resources.”