Dr. Manning Campbell Takes Helm of School District

By Journalist Ms. Jones

NEWBURGH – On Thursday, May 26th the Newburgh Enlarged City School District (NECSD) Board of Education held a special meeting. During this meeting they voted in Dr. Jackielyn Manning Campbell as Superintendent of Schools. Superintendent Manning Campbell began her assignment on July 1st. Her journey to superintendent came with some twists and turns. She did not go to school for education at first. She actually went to school to become a nurse like her mother until she realized that nursing was not her calling.

“I learned very quickly while in my second year of college. It was literally in my biology class… It clicked… I was like, ‘This is not for me.’ I literally probably had a 20 something year old PhD professor who was extremely bright. And I said, ‘Dr. Charles… this is not for me,’” said Superintendent Manning Campbell, who ended up with a bachelors degree in Health Services Administration. “I knew that I wanted to work with people… help people.”
She ended up moving to Florida. During that time, she would pick up her younger cousins from school.

Newburgh’s new superintendent, Dr. Jackielyn Manning Campbell, meets with students.
Newburgh’s new superintendent, Dr. Jackielyn Manning Campbell, meets with students.

“I just remember going to pick them up from school and just the energy at dismissal, the energy at school, and just watching that whole scene. I also had a cousin… born with some birth defects and she would go to school and receive OT and speech. And I saw the dedication that those professionals… took with those students,” said Superintendent Manning Campbell whose mom sent her an application for Lehman College to get a masters degree in education. “My end goal initially was to become a speech pathologist.”

She moved back to New York and began substitute teaching in a school that she attended as a student, John Philip Sousa Junior High School in the Bronx. That is where she got her foundation in education.

Newburgh’s new superintendent, Dr. Jackielyn Manning Campbell, center, and NYS Commissioner of Education, Dr. Betty Rosa, left, speak with a NECSD teacher.
Newburgh’s new superintendent, Dr. Jackielyn Manning Campbell, center, and NYS Commissioner of Education, Dr. Betty Rosa, left, speak with a NECSD teacher.

“My teachers were there. My assistant principals and my deans were there… I was really nurtured as an educator, because I had my teachers who now served as my official and unofficial mentors and they would come into the class [and] team teach with me. I would go to their classes. I would observe and pick up best practices. And I really had supportive principals who would say, ‘Go into such and such classroom. Just see what she does. Maybe you can pick one thing up,’” said Superintendent Manning Campbell. “That’s how I kind of built my classroom management and organizational structures as a classroom teacher… and the whole idea of community involvement, community engagement, and really building a foundation through community support.”

Superintendent Manning Campbell received her masters degree in Elementary Education and a second masters in administration. She taught for several years and even worked in a suspension room. Then she became an assistant principal in Mount Vernon. She worked in Mount Vernon for 14 years as an assistant principal, central office curriculum administrator for secondary, literacy, and history, pre-k manager, a principal, Associate Superintendent for Human Resources, and Superintendent of Pupil Personnel Services. She has worked as the Human Resources Director in White Plains. She was the Medical Director in New Rochelle as well as the Assistant Superintendent for Student Support Services and Acting Superintendent.

“Newburgh is very similar to New Rochelle, which is where I live. One of the things that I really like about Newburgh is the diversity…There are great educational programs here for students. Newburgh has a great [Career and Technical Education] (CTE) program. Newburgh has the opportunity to provide students with either a career or college pathway… We are building a new CTE building. We are going to be expanding on the program… I interviewed and I was a finalist in a couple of places. But, there was something about Newburgh that it just felt right when I came,” said Superintendent Manning Campbell. “My vision for the district is to really get back to the foundation of teaching and learning…My hope for the district… is to provide opportunities for all students and all families and I don’t really take that lightly… It takes a village… in order for us to really change the trajectory for children… Through education, we can really change generations…One of the things that I’d like to accomplish is to really have extended school days for all students having opportunities for schools to house enrichment and academic programs K-12. That will give students and parents an opportunity to have a safe haven because we know that during the hours of three to seven is when most things go awry…Students are unsupervised. Parents are working. It’s a really difficult time… [Another] one of my goals is to really have a true family engagement. We… want families and parents to understand that they really have a role and a true partnership is beneficial for all of us.”

Superintendent Manning Campbell is also focused on foundational literacy and really looking at how the NECSD engages literacy from very early on and what types of behaviors and activities the district can promote to enhance and promote literacy. Her goal is to have literate learners.

Journalist Ms. Jones

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