Getting to know junior Principal Corey Sink
Pathfinder: What got you interested in your job?
Sink: “I have always wanted to be a teacher. Working with kids was certainly a passion of mine, and I enjoy coaching too, so the sports aspect met together. I moved in that direction. When I was teaching, I found that professional development was really an interest to me, such as how to be really good at being a teacher. That work and how to help other teachers be really good at their job led to the leadership piece of an administration. I work while still being able to work with students, but also with adults.”
Is this your first year being a principal?
“No, this is my 12th [year], I have been doing this for some time.”
Where did you previously work?
“I worked at Parkway South for seven years as an Assistant Principal, then I was at St. Charles High School for four years as an Assistant Principal. I was in the classroom for the last seven years at St. Charles as a Marketing and Business teacher (DECA).”
What made you switch to West?
“After seven years of being in one place, I was looking for a new experience. I loved the Parkway School District, and I did not necessarily want to go outside the Parkway School District. This position opened up late, and I was excited to come over.”
How is West different from the other schools?
“The classes. You have 50 minute classes here unless you are on a block, but there is a bell every 50 minutes. At South, we were on a total block, so each class was 90 minutes. The speed of the classes has been an adjustment for me. If I want to see a student, I call them in, but next thing I know, there is only 10 minutes left in class.”
Are there any strategies you learned from other schools that you are using at West?
“This job and everything in life is about relationships. It is about getting to know the new faculty better. Life is that—it is working with people. No matter what the goal is, your ability to work with other people is one of the largest pieces of being able to do your job well. That is something I always go back to, whether it is relationships with the staff or relationships with the students. People want to work with people they like.”
Are there any things you are doing differently from last year’s principal?
“The role is not much different. The expectations of how you work with teachers and students are not foreign. In that aspect, not much is different. I feel comfortable knowing what the job is as it is now more me fitting into the culture that is West.”
Are you going to do anything differently this year?
“I tend to be a systems approach thinker, trying to understand how anything I do or what we do at West fits into a larger picture. That is how I go at it, and the big thing for me is getting to know the students. I have met a lot of students, but just getting the names down is what I am focused on right now. Same thing with the teachers, just spending time with them and seeing how they do their job and how they interact with kids in classrooms [is what I have been doing].”
What are you most excited for about this year?
“Again, the new experience, meeting new people, learning how they do their job, about the culture here, so many things!”
What are your goals for this year?
“Definitely help [the] kids. That is my goal no matter what I am doing. [I want] to feel like I am making a difference and refrain some of the ways that we look at things. [I am] always thinking about, ‘are we doing this the best way we can do it? Is there something else we can be thinking about?’ Another piece is next year, our freshman class will have Google Chromebooks. I want to make sure we are ready next year when we have students who have Chromebooks and what that looks like in class. That is a goal for me for sure this year, to work with our teachers so that teachers are ready. There are so many more things we can do with having technology like that in our classroom. We are really trying to make students prepared for your future rather than our [adults] future.”
What is your favorite thing about West so far?
“The kids are really nice, I have noticed [in the short time that I have been here] how friendly students are and kids are interested in getting to know me as much as I am in getting to know them.”
What is one fun fact about you that you want students to know?
“I have kids myself and my wife is a teacher in Parkway. She teaches second grade at one of the elementary schools [Wren Hollow]. We are a Parkway family, yet my kids go to Rockwood.”
How would you like students to see you?
“Someone that they can talk to that gets it. Someone that can help with issues and problems and make things that are difficult not as hard. Someone who they can talk to and direct them in the right way. I think sometimes we miss that adults are going through their own stuff too; I hope people understand that we are all here to support one another.”