Teaching runs in the family; meeting Krissy Smetana


Emily Filec

A new nameplate hangs on the door that used to say Tim Scanlon. Krissy Smetana has become RB’s new Assistant Principal of Curriculum and Instruction.

Emily Filec, Staff Reporter

This year has brought many additions to the RBHS family, one of whom is Kristin Smetana. Smetana replaced Tim Scanlon, former Assistant Principal for Curriculum and Instruction, upon his retirement. After serving as the Math Department Chair at Hinsdale Central, Smetana is eager to take her place as the new Assistant Principal.

As Assisstant Principal of Curriculum and Instruction, Smetana’s role involves observing and evaluating RB’s teachers as well as assisting them in the implementation of their curriculum.  Smetana’s role takes on new significance this year as recently enacted law in Illinois called SB7/PERA mandates that teachers can only be formally observed and evaluated by an administrator.  In previous years, teachers could have been formally observed and evaluated by their department chairs.

Education is in Smetana’s genetics; her mother taught elementary school and she also has several aunts who are teachers. At the age of two, Smetana attended the preschool class taught by her mom and grew up with a desire to pursue a career in education. It wasn’t until college that she decided to minor in secondary education. Smetana holds two master’s degrees – one in Curriculum and Instruction and the other in Educational Organization and Leadership. Excited to put her degrees to use, Smetana said she loved RB from the start.

“When I was going through the interview process,” Smetana said, “I was so impressed with the vision and mission statement here. It is in place every day.”

The Riverside Brookfiled High School Mission Statement states, “Riverside Brookfield High School is a partnership of parents, students, staff, Board of Education, elementary schools and community. This academic partnership will provide a comprehensive education in a safe, orderly, well-equipped environment. All students will be prepared with the intellectual, aesthetic, vocational, physical, personal and social skills necessary to be responsible and effective members of a diverse and changing world.”

Smetana said,  “Teachers truly go above and beyond in helping students pursue their academic, as well as personal goals.”

One of the ways in which teachers’ efforts are visible is through the variety of preparatory classes offered at RBHS. Smetana praised RB, saying it is wonderful to see classes such as CAP and College Readiness offered during the school day to provide students with the tools necessary to succeed in their future. RB is unique in that these opportunities are not available during the school day in most districts.

Her goal this year is to become acclimated with the initiatives in place and help teachers as they express new ideas and implement them in the classroom.

Grateful to be in such a positive and welcoming environment, Smetana said the students are extremely respectful and the faculty is both supportive and enthusiastic. Daily, Smetana said, she experiences a sense of the Bulldog Community.

“When I meet students during lunch, they are always so respectful; they stand up, introduce themselves and shake my hand. That isn’t something you see in many high schools,” Smetana said.