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Michael Harkin

Michael Harkin

Michael Harkin will be appointed as Columbia High School’s next principal at a special Board of Education meeting on Wednesday, November 29 at 7 p.m. in the Central Administration Board of Education Conference Room.

Mr. Harkin is currently the principal of Knickerbacker Middle School in the Lansingburgh Central School District. He will start at Columbia on December 29, but will visit the high school between now and his start date to work with Principal John Sawchuk, who is retiring on January 1.

“I’m excited and privileged to be the next principal of Columbia High School,” Mr. Harkin said. “I look forward to working collaboratively with the students, staff, administration, Board of Education, and community to continue its tradition of academic excellence.”

Mr. Harkin has 12 years of administrative experience as a principal and athletic director. He has served as principal of Knickerbacker Middle School since 2014. Prior to that position, he was the director of physical education and athletics at Lansingburgh from 2007-14 and director of athletics at Brunswick (Brittonkill) Central School District from 2005-07.

Mr. Harkin began his career as a physical education teacher at Thomas O’Brien Elementary School in Albany in 1999. He has a bachelor’s degree in physical education from Canisius College and a master’s degree in educational administration from The College of Saint Rose.

“I am confident that Mr. Harkin will do an outstanding job in this important position,” said Superintendent Jeff Simons. “His experience as a principal, administrator and teacher paired with his leadership skills will be a benefit to the entire school community. I would like to thank the search committee for their diligent work and Mr. Sawchuk for his assistance in the transition period.”

Parents, school staff and community members are invited to attend the special board meeting on November 29 to welcome Mr. Harkin to the East Greenbush Central School District.