National recognition of Rupert elementary school principal delayed but not forgotten
POTTSTOWN – Add the opportunity of Rupert Elementary School principal Matthew Moyer to be chosen as the best principal in the country to the things the COVID-19 pandemic has spoiled.
In May 2020, Moyer was named Pennsylvania Principal of the Year by the Pennsylvania Principal’s Association. In a normal year, he would then have attended the national conference of the National Association of Elementary School Principals where, in the past, one candidate was chosen from candidates from each state.
But that did not happen. In fact, the whole conference did not take place. âIt was supposed to be in October of last year because October is National Principal Month, but they pushed it back to January because of COVID. Then it was pushed back to the summer, âMoyer told Mercury Friday.
This summer, he was joined by 49 other principals to receive his certificate and an engraved school bell.
Moyer was also asked to give three workshops at this year’s national conference, which took place recently.
He spoke about using social media to promote your school – which anyone who has followed their Twitter account or watched their YouTube videos will know this is a topic they are familiar with – as well as understand how to reach and teach children living in poverty and self-care for principals.
The latter workshop he gave in tandem with a household name, Pottsgrove High School principal, Bill Ziegler. Together, the two produce and distribute on social media short forums for their fellow directors called âknowledge principalsâ.
âWe talked about the work-life balance, which so many people think of these days,â Moyer said. âWe talked about the fact that there are larks, people who get up early in the morning and do things in the quiet hours; and owls, the people who send e-mails at midnight and one in the morning. And we talked about the need to make sure to make time for the family and the kids, âwhich his wife and two children, ages 15 and 17, undoubtedly appreciate.
Moyer said in his other speech that he discussed the impacts and “culture of generational poverty.” When you have a student who lives in poverty, whose parents live in poverty and whose grandparents live in poverty, it’s a different culture than the culture of the middle class or the culture of the affluent, âhe said. Moyer said.
âThat doesn’t mean they’re less intelligent, sure. It just means that they have a different culture and like any culture you have to know and understand it in order to know the best way to reach them and understand how they learn, âexplained Moyer.
Attending the national conference was âinspiring,â Moyer said.
âBeing around so many amazing directors, hearing what they’re doing and seeing the things they’re trying, it was so amazing,â said Moyer.
When asked if he had one in particular, Moyer didn’t hesitate. âThere was a woman who spoke about the loss of her daughter, and how difficult it was, but also how it helped her approach her work differently, and how the community came together around her. it was really inspiring, âhe said.