Lionville Middle School’s Kirby named outstanding PA Asst. Principal for 2024

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Andrew W. Kirby

Andrew W. Kirby, Assistant Principal of Lionville Middle School (LMS) in the Downingtown Area School District, was selected as Pennsylvania’s 2024 Outstanding Assistant Principal of the Year by the Pennsylvania Principals Association. As a state winner in the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) National Outstanding Assistant Principal (NOAP) of the Year Program, Mr. Kirby is eligible for consideration to be named the NAESP National Outstanding Assistant Principal of the Year.

Dr. Eric Eshbach, Executive Director, PA Principals Association, said, “Our selection committee has once again chosen a distinguished, talented educator to represent assistant principals in Pennsylvania at the elementary/middle level. Andrew Kirby exemplifies the qualities we seek for this award while serving the 1,057 students and staff at Lionville Middle School: dedication, leadership, professionalism and a passion for learning for students, staff, the school and the community. I am pleased that Andrew will represent the Pennsylvania Principals Association and Pennsylvania as our 2024 Outstanding Assistant Principal.”

Kirby has served as an assistant principal at Lionville Middle School since 2021. He has been an educator for eight years, beginning his career as a school psychologist at Elk Ridge Elementary School and Oxford Area High School in the Oxford Area School District.

“On behalf of the Downingtown Area School District board, administration and school community, we are proud to celebrate Mr. Kirby. His kind and caring approach, along with his high expectations, have earned him the trust and respect of the Lionville Middle School (LMS) community. We’re very grateful to Mr. Kirby for his daily commitment to serving our LMS students and staff, and congratulate him on this statewide honor,” said Robert J. O’Donnell, Ed.D., Superintendent of Downingtown Area School District.

Kirby’s path to the position of Assistant Principal is unique and is one that strengthened his leadership style and commitment to his community. His background in psychology and work as a school psychologist is grounded in evaluation and application of evidence-based interventions to support those in need and has become essential in his continued work with students. During his tenure as an assistant principal at Lionville Middle School, Kirby has been diligent in his support of their Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) and Tier I services. In addition, he has been successful in working with teachers, school counselors, school social workers and school psychologists to develop and implement a strong tiered system of social, emotional and behavioral services for all students.

A strong, passionate leader, Kirby has collaborated with core instruction teachers and intervention specialists to implement an effective and efficient process to support all students in literature and math. “I focused on developing our application of data-based decision making through refining the data being collected, consistency in decision making and progress monitoring for change based on the application of evidence-based practices,” he explained.

Kirby, working in conjunction with their administrative team and staff, reviews data and conducts diagnostic assessments in reading and math, which informs their application of interventions in all tiers of support. He said, “We continue to collect data and evaluate effectiveness in all areas of intervention. Most importantly, we have increased our data-informed practices in the core, for all students.” He has also served on a variety of district-level committees working toward this process.

Kirby shared, “I am honored to have been nominated and awarded Pennsylvania’s Outstanding Assistant Principal award. I want to thank the Downingtown Area School District and Lionville Middle School as I am always grateful to serve such an amazing community. I also want to thank my family, colleagues and friends for their support and love.”

In addition to being a member of the PA Principals Association and NAESP, Mr. Kirby belongs to the National Association of School Psychologists. Kirby earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Temple University, a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology from Immaculata University and his Administrative PK-12 Principal Certificate from Cabrini University.

Dr. Jonathan Ross, LMS Principal and the person who nominated Kirby for this award, said, “Mr. Kirby is the epitome of a child-centered leader. He approaches every problem with the mindset of what is best for our students. They, in turn, recognize and appreciate the dedication to our mission that Mr. Kirby exemplifies every day.

Much like our students, the staff of LMS not only respect what Mr. Kirby does for us, but they willingly follow his lead in working to make our school the best possible experience that we can provide to our families.”

Kirby shared, “Prior to joining public education, my listening skills were uniquely developed as a student of psychology, and through my work in child and adolescent community mental health. My childhood provided me with my foundation for servant leadership. I am fortunate to have been raised in a family that consistently lives a life of service to others. Spending time with my parents while they served our community provided me with the modeling to effectively serve others. My parents have taught me to serve others with positivity, humility and creativity.”

Kirby resides in Downingtown with his wife, Amanda, and their children, Cameron and Sarah.

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