Four quick questions with Gerald Yung, the new principal of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. School:

yungWhat attracted you to Cambridge? What made you want to work here?

My family moved to Cambridge when I was in the 10th grade from Florida.  I love the diversity in Cambridge, and the multicultural celebrations.  Cambridge offers so many great museums, restaurants, coffee shops, and a big city energy with a small town familiarity.  I wanted to work at the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. School because of it’s diverse population, and the teaching and learning opportunities that arise from this strong, personalized, small, close-knit learning community, and the tremendous enthusiasm and knowledge from teachers, students, and parents around the school’s mission. 

 

What are some of the things that make you excited about leading the King School?

I am particularly excited about the school’s Chinese Mandarin Language Program, the Literacy Collaborate, and Expanded Learning Time.  I believe that these programs offer students a great opportunity to become leaders in an increasingly globalized world, achieve above grade level reading and writing skills, and to have more time for learning, especially project-based learning and portfolios.  I am excited about joining passionate educators and parents in continuing to make the school a place where learning, creativity, and research-based risk taking are fostered.

 

Tell us a little more about you and who you are. Married? Kids? What do you like to do when you’re not at work? What do you like to do for fun?

I’m married to my college sweetheart.  We also have a son, named Luke Gabriel, who is one month old.  He’s a handful of joy; he makes the most unusual cooing sounds and has ahead full of big curly locks.  I enjoy playing basketball on the weekends, and I love watching professional sports.  Even though I grew up in Florida, I had a Larry Bird and Roger Clemens posters on my bedroom wall.  When I have the time, I try to take walks in state parks.

 

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? Did you always want to be an educator? What made you choose education as your profession?

As a child, I always wanted to be a pediatrician.  Our pediatrician was super friendly and he had a great office complete with salt-water fish, children books, and whimsical, comfortable furniture.  My senior year at college, I volunteered in a school in Atlanta, Georgia, and I felt an immediate connection at being able to help students develop and try to fulfill their dreams.  I’ve carried this with me as a teacher and principal; the mission of helping children keep their dreams alive, learn the skills, habits, and character necessary to do so, and develop supportive relationships.

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