NEWBERRY — Newberry Academy had new heads of the school last week — temporarily, that is.
Josh and Allison Joyner, fifth- and seventh-grade students respectively, become “Heads of the School” after their family was the winning bidder on this year’s “Head of the School for the Day” during the Academy’s Blue and Gray Gala.
Head of School Brian Fitzgerald worked with his colleagues to arrange a day that would not only be fun, but would give the students a real understanding of what his leadership role truly entailed.
“What students don’t realize is that there is so much more to running a school,” said Fitzgerald. “Whether I’m observing classrooms, meeting with prospective families or even fixing a leaky toilet, there is never a moment where I am not busy doing something to help our school.”
Josh and Allison Joyner had a busy day scheduled. They read the announcements at the weekly all-school morning meeting, conducted classroom evaluations in lower, middle and high school classes and had a live on-air interview with Jimmie Coggins at WKDK.
They also assisted the school’s Food Coordinator by serving students at the morning biscuit break before heading down to the preschool, where they checked in on the activities of the 2K-5K classes.
The new “Heads of the School” were also given a private lunch from US Deli and Wings, along with two of their friends. They were also led through a series of meetings with school officials which included the chairman of the board of directors, the athletic director and the dean of students.
“Hardest part, as a principal, you get a bunch of requests about stuff you need to do and you cannot complete all of them,” Josh Joyner said.
Allison Joyner said she had fun visiting the kindergarten class and that they were really fun. She added that she enjoyed visiting places they normally do not go and that it felt nice to run something.
One task that the Joyners had to complete was an Executive Order.
“I gave my classmates the afternoon off, so they will have recess outside and they will have computer time to play games and stuff, and then at 2 p.m. they will have a big secret ice cream party. I think they will be really excited,” Allison Joyner said.
“We are basically doing the same thing. It’s going to be pretty fun. My class either loves outside or loves computer class. It will fit everyone’s needs,” Josh Joyner said.
After the ice cream party with their fellow classmates, the Joyners were presented with framed copies of their official Executive Order, along with a gift bag of Newberry Academy goodies. As their final act as “Heads of School,” they read the afternoon announcements over the school-wide intercom, taking a moment to thank their fellow students.
“Josh and Allison are not only great students, but really great young people as well,” said Fitzgerald. “I was so proud of how hard they worked today and the professionalism they showed in everything they did. I have a feeling leadership just might be in their futures.”
Both Josh and Allison Joyner said this experience may have inspired them to go into the education field.
“I like running stuff. You have to take care of so many things. It makes me feel special to be a part of something bigger. They count on me,” Allison Joyner said.
“I have always wanted to be a coach of some sort, I love sports. Going to the kindergarten and seeing those little brains can build so much, teach these kids knowledge,” Josh Joyner said.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @ TheNBOnews. Some information for this story was provided by Newberry Academy.