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New principal to start July 1 in Oriskany

Nicole A. Hawley
Staff writer
email / twitter
Posted 6/4/22

Oriskany Central School district has recently hired Andrew K. Kennedy to serve at principal of Oriskany Junior/Senior High School.

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New principal to start July 1 in Oriskany

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ORISKANY — Oriskany Central School district has recently hired Andrew K. Kennedy to serve at principal of Oriskany Junior/Senior High School. Kennedy will begin his new position on July 1, following the resignation of current Principal Mark J. Ranieri.

Kennedy was a special education, 15:1 sixth, seventh and eighth grade science teacher and resource room teacher at Whitesboro Middle School for six years. For the past four years, he has served as assistant principal at Canastota Junior/Senior High School.

The new hire graduated with a bachelor’s of science degree in biology and environmental science at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn. He then went on to Utica College for his master’s of science degree in adolescence and special education.

Kennedy has his professional teaching certificate in biology (grades 5-9), biology (7-12), Students with Disabilities (grades 1-6), and Students with Disabilities (grades 7-12). He has most recently completed his C.A.S. in School Building Leader, School District Leader, and School District Business Leader from SUNY Cortland.

“I come from a family history of educators, and had amazing teachers growing up. My high school biology teacher, Mrs. Owens, and chemistry teacher, Mrs. Reilly, instilled a passion of learning into my life, that I wanted to pursue for my future,” said Kennedy. “Educators face challenges every day, but the moments you can connect with a student and have a breakthrough, small or large, makes the hard work well worth it.”

Kennedy said he chose Oriskany Central Schools because he always wanted to work in a school that “feels close to home,” where he could not only become an administrator, but also a present and involved member of the community. “I feel that Oriskany is a perfect district to do just that,” the principal said. “I like that Oriskany is a small district with a strong sense of community. I hear great things from people who grew up here, and there is deep school spirit and school pride.”

Kennedy enjoys staying active, reading, cooking, being outdoors and traveling. He also likes to volunteer his time when the opportunity allows. He said he and his fiancee enjoy going for runs and walks on their residential road, and hiking the Adirondacks high peaks.

Kennedy has volunteered at a summer camp on Martha’s Vineyard named Camp Jabberwocky for 20 years. The camp is the oldest sleep-away camp for adults with disabilities in the United States. He was a counselor for several years and now serves as cook.

As for community activities, Kennedy said in the past, he has enjoyed volunteering for local fitness events, United Way, and Hope House. Although the pandemic delayed many volunteer opportunities, he said he looks forward to participating in Oriskany events and activities next school year.

“I truly believe in educating a student through academics as well as helping them build strong life skills that they can use in their lives every day,” Kennedy said. “I am so very excited for the opportunity to work with Oriskany staff, students, families and community.”

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