New Assistant Superintendent McNamara Thrilled to Be Here in Wantagh


Jacqueline Schroder, Associate Editor

The new Assistant Superintendent for the Wantagh School District John C. McNamara has been a middle and a high school teacher, a social studies chairperson, an assistant principal, and a middle school principal. He says that he is ecstatic to be Wantagh’s Assistant Superintendent for Instruction. He’s eager to learn more about our community, students, and most important, the district’s needs. Specifically, he will work with different grade levels, different kinds of academic disciplines and a great mix of staff, students and community members.

Mr. McNamara grew up in Suffolk County. He attended kindergarten through 12th grade in Rocky Point and then graduated from Providence College in Rhode Island. His favorite subject was history. He aspired to be a history teacher after being inspired by his 11th-grade history teacher.

“My 11th-grade history teacher did everything he could to make the class interesting,” said Mr. McNamara. “He told amazing stories and still kept the class challenging.” He followed up on his dream and taught history for several years in the Island Trees School District.

Overall, Mr. McNamara is working to develop a distinct curriculum that suits our community’s needs precisely. He believes that there is always flexibility with the curriculums we follow, and that it’s his job to fit it to the best of his ability.

What does he see as the principle things that a good school administrator does? He puts curriculum development at the top of the list. When the curriculum needs to be adjusted, he isn’t going to reach conclusions alone.

As for his strengths as an administrator, he said, “I work collaboratively. I let people in on decisions.” When selecting a new resource or intervention program for our schools, his first step is always going to be to identify what the goal is then “get the stake holders together!”

He is clearly flexible and rational, two great qualities to possess as an assistant superintendent.

Like every other educator, Mr. McNamara does have a life outside of the office. In his free time, he loves to play with his two children who are six and four, while additionally spending time with his wife. When he isn’t preoccupied with his family, he likes to go boating, to play golf, and to read.