Principal Santana To Move On From Glen Cove High School

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Glen Cove Record Pilot

Beloved Glen Cove High School Principal Antonio Santana said his feelings are on par with the Class of 2022 as he prepares to leave the school for a new opportunity.

“I feel like I’m the Glen Cove Class of 2022, I’m kind of an honorary member of that class,” Santana said. “We’re moving on to the next chapter of our lives. I even snuck myself into their school photo for the yearbook.”

Santana will be moving on to serve as superintendent for the South Country Central School District based in Patchogue. He said he wasn’t actively looking for another position outside of Glen Cove, as he’s been enjoying his seven “rewarding” years with the district, but friends and colleagues within the educational field had told him that South Country might be a good fit for him. He was ultimately hired for the position.

“[Glen Cove has been] a great community to serve as a principal,” Santana said.

“I love our diversity. We have fantastic students and it’s been great to see the growth that the high school has gone through within the last seven years in terms of adding a lot of great courses and getting into competitive schools, and getting national recognition for our music program and our academic achievements. It’s been a fantastic ride.”

Santana said he will also miss his fellow faculty members, stating that he’s forged great, professional relationships over those seven years.

“The decision to sort of move on was a difficult one,” Santana said. “As much as I look forward to the opportunity that I’ve been afforded, it’s very bittersweet and it’s going to be very sad to not see these people on a daily basis, and I mean that for my entire staff and the students, of course.”

The principal certainly faced some unique challenges faced by school faculty nationally and internationally: keeping students learning during a pandemic.

Santana said that experience was unlike anything he’s experienced in his entire life.

“It wasn’t just the pandemic,” Santana said. “But also all the social unrest that we’ve kind of witnessed in the past few years. I think people will say that kids these days aren’t as resilient as kids were when I was a kid growing up in the ‘80s, but I’ll say this; I think they’re a lot more resilient, on top of all the other pressures that they have like social media, that I didn’t have to face as a teenager. I’m really proud of them and they’ve come a long way.”

When asked what his favorite memories were serving Glen Cove High School, Santana said it was a combination of spirit weeks, Halloween, social and emotional events and his interactions with students in the hallway.

“Whenever I’m stressed or feel overwhelmed by work, I go into the hallway and interact with the students,” Santana said.

“I don’t know how much I’ll be able to do that as a superintendent, but I think that’s what I’ll miss the most.”

Glen Cove City School District Superintendent Dr. Maria Rianna said she was extremely proud and grateful of Santana for the work he has done in his capacity as principal of Glen Cove High School, as well as the community as a whole.

It was announced at the June 9 Board of Education meeting that Assistant Principal Allen Hudson will now serve as Glen Cove High School’s Principal.

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