After serving in middle school administration for 10 years, Calvin Hubbard has moved up to a new role as assistant principal for student services at Grand Island Senior High.
Hubbard, who previously served as assistant principal at Walnut Middle School, began his new role as GISH assistant principal on Nov. 11, after former assistant principal Greg Morrow returned to the classroom as a social studies teacher to take over the classroom of his son, who passed away unexpectedly last year.
Hubbard said his experience as a GISH assistant principal has been a positive one so far.
“I was very comfortable at my old job at Walnut Middle School and loved it,” he said. “But I didn’t have to consider it when I was asked to become the assistant principal up here (GISH). It was a very easy decision to make. I knew a lot of the teachers already, so it was easy to transition to this job.”
As assistant principal of student services, Hubbard said, his role is different from that of most principals at the high school as he is not associated with a specific academy. His job is to assist the academy principals with student behavior and scheduling situations. He also supervises counselors, social workers and GISH Wellness Center staff.
“I also work with the principal (Jeff Gilbertson) in supervising our ‘global teachers,’ who teach elective-type classes,” Hubbard said. “Along with that, I am the person who makes sure that all of our safety policies at the district and high-school level are being followed and maintained.”
Hubbard said his roles at Walnut and GISH are “very similar,” but are different in schedules, college planning and college credits. He also dealt a lot more with social and emotional learning at Walnut.
“The challenges are that it (GISH) is three times the size (as Walnut) and there are a lot of moving parts,” he said. “The schedule is different here, too. But I do not see those as much as challenges, so much as I see them as new and fresh opportunities.”
Hubbard said that other GISH principals, as well as Morrow, have provided support and mentorship to him in his new role.
“I appreciate that they have allowed me to do what I feel is natural and guide myself,” he said. “I appreciate they have allowed me to do that, instead of saying what I need to do and telling me that is all I am going to do. It has been a nice working relationship with them.”
When it comes to building relationships with students as a GISH assistant principal, Hubbard said he already knows a third of the students from his time at Walnut. For the remaining two-thirds of GISH students, he tries to make himself visible during passing times and engage in conversations with students he does not know.
“I like to start discussions with kids that I might not have had a previous relationship with about football or something else I notice about them that may be part of their personality,” he said. “I want to use that in starting a discussion. After that, once I see them in the hallway the second time, they remember that positive reaction they had with me and will start up a conversation with me. It just goes from there.”
One positive of his new role, Hubbard said, is having the opportunity to see his son, a senior, at school on a daily basis. As a 20-year member of the Army National Guard, Hubbard said he also enjoys seeing the GISH Junior Air Force ROTC program in action.
“I have viewed it and I have talked to kids in eighth grade about it as part of their transition year,” he said. “With me being a veteran of the National Guard, I just really respect that program. In being here, I can see those kids in it and that is a great, new experience for me.”