Beach Haven School’s New Superintendent Getting Students Involved With Local Library, Knitting
Carl Krushinski, the new superintendent of the Beach Haven School, which opened for its first day of the new school year last Wednesday, is focused on more than just the students’ day-to-day classroom education. He hopes to help foster the district’s already tight-knit bond by getting the children involved in more community-focused projects and outings such as having the students take regular trips to the Beach Haven Public Library.
When Krushinski started as superintendent in July, he was offered an opportunity to be a part of the local library committee, which he said has given him insight into some of the other aspects of town, including the need for the students to become more involved with the facility.
“Over the last three years the prior superintendent didn’t really let the students go to the public library, so one thing that I decided to do this year is give some of the grades actual library time to get a library card and check out books and be a part of all that,” Krushinski stated.
Students in kindergarten through third grade will get to spend time at the library during the regular school day at least once a month, he noted.
Krushinski is also acting with the school board to help restore the school’s own library, which he said used to be more extensive before it was “dismantled a bit” during the last few years. The school board and library committee will be working together over the next three years to rebuild the collection of books.
The superintendent hopes to also join forces with the public library’s local knitting group to encourage more of a connection between the students and the community’s older citizens. An avid knitter himself, Krushinski said the art form is great for improving hand-eye coordination as well as to practice counting. He said he learned how to knit many years ago while working at an elementary school in Plumstead Township, where it was taught to help students with ADHD.
“We found that when they knit, it helps them to focus and keep their hands busy, which I thought was a great idea,” Krushinski stated. “Over the years I’ve wanted to make this more available to students that have never had the opportunity. So now with this local club right down the road, I think we can get something going.
“The way I look at Beach Haven, the community stands behind its school 100 percent. But there’s very little opportunity for people that don’t have children in school anymore to participate. So this, I think, will be a great connection between the kids and some older adults,” he added.
Down the line, Krushinski would like to get the students involved in knitting projects that can be donated to the hospital or a homeless shelter to help cultivate stewardship among the children.
“I think there’s a lot of potential down the road for that,” he said. “It’s a great skill because it’s something the students can do whenever they have some down time, so it gets them away from electronics.”
In the meantime, Krushinski said he is concentrating on moving through the school year and making recommendations as needed. He hopes to maintain a “really positive interaction” with the students and their families as well as the overall community.
“It’s been great so far,” he said. “Everyone has been very informative and helpful. We had a great first day from beginning to end, and everything went extremely well. It’s just one big family.”
— Kelley Anne Essinger