Katherine Grykien Named Principal at Hiawatha Elementary

Katherine GrykienESSEX JUNCTION, Vt. – On Tuesday, January 31, the Essex Westford School District approved Katherine Grykien as the next Principal of Hiawatha Elementary School. Grykien will begin at Hiawatha starting on July 1, 2017.

Grykien will join Hiawatha after spending the last two years as an Assistant Principal at Edmunds Middle School in Burlington. With 17 years of experience in the field of education, she brings the knowledge and tools to be an effective instructional leader. Prior to her time at Edmunds, Grykien was a classroom teacher at both John F. Kennedy in Winooski and Champlain Elementary in Burlington, at which time she served as the Chair of the Champlain Elementary School Leadership Committee and held the role of district literacy coach for one year.

Grykien received her undergrad degree from the University of Georgia, and then earned her Master’s in Education from the University of Vermont in 2007. She has also continued with postgraduate coursework at Saint Michael’s College, focusing on school leadership.

Superintendent Judith DeNova said that Grykien emerged as the top candidate for this position based on her understanding that relationships are a foundation for moving forward.

“Katherine is deeply committed to establishing strong, meaningful relationships with colleagues, students, parents and the community and she knows that the collaboration with these various groups is truly one of the essential components of student growth and proficiency. She has several years of experience implementing the Common Core Standards, and a solid understanding of how to improve instruction based on student data,” said DeNova.

“Hiawatha faculty, staff, parents and district administrators were all impressed with her optimistic personality, effective communication style and highly developed listening skills. I am confident Katherine is the ‘just right’ leader at this moment in time to serve the Hiawatha school community. I am also thankful for the time and effort of those who served on the search committee and were involved in the various forums.”

“I am absolutely thrilled to accept the position and feels honored to join such a caring community,” said Grykien.

Grykien takes over for Principal Tom Bochanski, who will be retiring after 18 years of service to the children and families of Essex Junction. During his tenure as principal, Bochanski was recognized as Vermont’s Distinguished Principal of the Year in 2011.

For more information on Hiawatha, visit: http://hiawatha.ccsuvt.org/