The Riverhead Central School District has named one of its own, Gary Karlson, as the new assistant principal at Aquebogue Elementary School.
“During his time in Riverhead, Mr. Karlson has demonstrated leadership, innovation and a positivity that extends to students, parents and staff members,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Aurelia Henriquez. “We are pleased to have him as our new assistant principal.”
“Working in Riverhead for the past 18 years, I have long known about Aquebogue Elementary School’s dynamic, collaborative, child-centered, and team driven culture. When the opportunity arose to continue that tradition while nurturing a safe, respectful, and responsible atmosphere it was a personal and professional dream come true,” Karlson said. “I cannot wait to integrate myself fully into the Aquebogue community by working alongside other members of the team to support our students, staff and school community as a whole.”
Karlson, of Wading River, has been a teacher at Roanoke Avenue and Phillips Avenue schools in the Riverhead School District for the past 18 years. During his Riverhead teaching career, he has prioritized the social-emotional health of students, worked to increase student engagement in curriculum and collaborated with the Parent Teacher Organization on schoolwide initiatives.
Karlson has also served as vice president of the Riverhead Central Faculty Association from 2013-2019 and as an officer of the Riverhead Special Education Parent Teacher Association since 2009. In addition, he has been a trustee on the board of the Association for Habilitation and Residential Care in Suffolk since 2017.
Karlson earned his master’s degree in pre-K-6 education from St. Joseph’s College in Patchogue, his certificate in special education for birth-21 from Long Island University – Brentwood, and his Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages and School Building Leader certificates from St. John’s University in Oakdale.