Penn Kidders says goodbye to McAndrew
Penn Kidder students and parents said farewell to Principal David McAndrew Jr. on Monday.
The PTA organized a drive-thru sendoff to the departing principal outside the school.
“Not being able to say goodbye adds another bout of devastation to the children with everything they’ve already missed this year - the relationship between the teachers and the kids,” said Amber Everett, a Penn Kidder PTA member.
McAndrew recently accepted a new job as superintendent of Panther Valley School District. He was principal at Penn-Kidder the last six years.
When he announced his departure, in-person classes had already been canceled for the year.
The event gave students a chance to surprise their principal with a goodbye. Penn Kidder teachers also got involved, lining the sidewalks and waving to the passing students.
The students and parents made signs for McAndrew, and PTA members presented him with farewell gifts. Albrightsville Fire Co. led the procession of vehicles to the school.
Penn Kidder PTA President Kelly Atkinson said McAndrew provided support to their organization as well as the students.
“He just loved his job and loved his kids. We always had the same goal - to make sure to remember the kids come first, so he was wonderful,” Atkinson said.
McAndrew’s colleagues spoke about his dedication and said it will be an asset to Panther Valley.
“We’re sorry to see him go, but we’re happy for him at the same time. It’s our loss but their gain,” said Mary Ann Lugaino, K-7 music teacher.
Trish Lorkowski recalled working with McAndrew in his first year of teaching and immediately seeing his enthusiasm and compassion.
“He’s a hard worker and he was the principal who showed up in the cafeteria and said ‘how’s it going,’ not ‘you’re in trouble,’ she said.
Parents agreed that he has been a principal who practices fairness whether it’s to them or their students.
“He’s definitely someone who’s going to be missed and we’re just hoping whoever replaces him knows they have some pretty big shoes to fill when it comes to Mr. McAndrew,” Atkinson said.