By Rebecca Boyajian, Jessica Giffen, and Delaney Murphy
Class of 2017
For Walpole High School’s new Program Coordinator April Zyriek, being raised with an academically-oriented family and a mother who went back to school to become a teacher inspired her to pursue a career in education.
Before coming to Walpole High, Ms. Zyriek acquired a degree in counseling from UMass Boston, a degree in special education from Northeastern University, and a degree in educational leadership from Endicott College.
She then worked as the principal of a small, alternative school called Assabet Valley Collaborative for seven years. Later, Ms. Zyriek became the Special Education Coordinator at Norwood Public Schools until Walpole High School hired her for the 2014-2015 school year.
As Program Coordinator, Ms. Zyriek’s responsibilities include overseeing the Bridge Program, the Special Education Program, and the Language Inclusion Program. Ms. Zyriek’s main goal is to ensure that every student receives a proper education that works for each student’s unique needs. She also makes sure that students whose first language is not English receive appropriate accommodations in order to excel in school.
Thus far, Ms. Zyriek has enjoyed her transition into the high school. “I’m really liking my time here at Walpole High School,” she said. “Everyone has been so helpful and supportive.”
Although Ms. Zyriek’s main passions are education and her students, she also has interests and hobbies outside of school. Ms. Zyriek is part of the Best Buddies program here at Walpole High and she enjoys a variety of extracurricular and outdoor activities; as a child, she was involved in softball, field hockey, and drama club.
“I like to be outside,” Ms. Zyriek said. “I like to ride my bike, hike, and do yoga.” Her job even allows her to take a brief walk outside from the Plimpton School to the high school, as she splits her time between two offices.
Ms. Zyriek overall offers great potential as the new Program Coordinator here at Walpole High School due to her varied interests, optimistic personality, and her passion for student success.