A Bennington native and former first-grade teacher at the School of Sacred Heart St. Francis de Sales, Tiffany McKenna, has been selected to succeed long-time Principal David Estes as head of the Bennington Catholic school.

“My focus as principal of the School of Sacred Heart St. Francis de Sales is to keep it the best school in our area,” McKenna said. “I expect the school to continue making sure the learners are challenged academically and spiritually, centering their daily routine around Gospel values and being well rounded, productive citizens in our community.”

McKenna believes it is the responsibility of a Catholic school to teach students how to love one another in a community by setting a positive example through modeling Gospel values. “Our role as educators in a Catholic school is to radiate our Catholic faith through our instruction and interactions with the entire school community — students, families and staff,” she said.

McKenna attended the University of Vermont and earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and minored in special education with an interdisciplinary major concentration in psychology and nutrition. She continued her education at the University of Connecticut, receiving a master’s degree in educational psychology, concentrating on gifted education and talent development while working with researchers in the field at the National Research Center for the Gifted and Talented that is housed at UConn.

She has been teaching fifth grade for the past nine years at a local public elementary school

Her contract at the Catholic elementary school is effective July 1, but she will do some transitional work with Estes and the school community before.

—Originally published in the Summer 2021 issue of Vermont Catholic magazine.