STRATFORD, Conn. -- Lori DiBlasi, who works at Franklin & Wilcoxson Elementary School in Stratford, is one of the winners of the 2017 Assistant Principal of the Year Awards. The award is given by the Connecticut Association of Schools.
“I am so very honored and humbled to receive such a prestigious award and to be in the company of such passionate and accomplished previous recipients,” DiBlasi said.
Each year, applications are accepted for the Elementary, Middle, and High School Assistant Principal of the Year awards. The winners are chosen by the CAS Awards and Recognition Committee, a selection committee consisting of active and retired principals and assistant principals.
DiBlasi was nominated for the award by Franklin’s principal, Sherrod McNeill, himself a former Assistant Principal of the Year.
Though an assistant principal for only 2.5 years, DiBlasi’s efforts and influence have dramatically shaped the culture and climate of both the schools in which she works. Her positive impact can be seen in all areas of the schools’ operations and felt by all members of the school communities.
“As an instructional leader of Franklin and Wilcoxson Elementary Schools, Ms. DiBlasi lives her dream of making a difference in the lives of her students, parents and teachers,'' McNeill said.
“This award is reflective of the successes of our entire learning community and I share it with my supervisors, administrative mentors and teams, colleagues, teaching staffs, and, the students and parents of Franklin and Wilcoxson schools. These communities of learners inspire me on a daily basis to strive to greater heights in our pursuit of lifelong learning,” DiBlasi said.
Since her appointment as assistant principal in 2014, DiBlasi has worked to foster a climate that promotes academic rigor as well as social growth and development; she has dramatically increased community support for and involvement in school programs; and she, has worked with staff to develop data-driven instructional strategies that inspire students to higher levels of engagement and learning.
What makes these accomplishments all the more impressive is the fact that she has achieved them in not one but two schools, one of which has a minority population of 77 percent.
DiBlasi began her career in education as a school social worker. The sensitivity, flexibility and compassion that distinguished her in that role have carried over expertly into her work as a school administrator.
“Ms. DiBlasi’s background as a social worker has proven to be an invaluable resource,'' McNeill said. "In her role as assistant principal, she is often called upon to provide steady composure and thoughtful decision making skills in highly stressful situations. With her calm demeanor, she is able to de-escalate volatile circumstances and provide the colleagues with whom she works the unwavering support and knowledge that is so necessary during these times.”
In addition, Christopher Koch of Bunnell High School in Stratford was named the High School Assistant Principal of the Year.