As San Joaquin Memorial High School traverses through the chaos that is the Covid-19 pandemic, a change in the hierarchy system at SJM is arising. Earlier this year, SJM began its shift into a new leadership structure with two new roles. This model of leadership is known as the President/Principal model, creating a two-person form of leadership that differs greatly from the Head of School model SJM has had for quite some time.
For some who are unaware of what a model like this entails, it essentially dictates that the affairs occurring at our school are divided into two different sections, each controlled by either the Principal or the President. The President is in charge of the business side of the school, managing administrative duties and finances whilst the Principal is in charge of academic affairs such as student curriculum and faculty development and evaluation. While Michael Burke will transition into the President role, it is the position of Principal that SJM has been the most difficult to fill.
However instead of continuing with their search outside for a new principal, those in charge of selection instead looked inward, choosing from the immense pool of talented administrators and teachers that populate our campus.
Anthony Goston has been with the Memorial family for quite some time, graduating with the Class of 1994 before returning to the campus as a coach, teacher and administrator in 1998. Goston has served as Athletic Director, AP European History instructor, P.E. teacher and currently serves as the Assistant Head of School for Memorial Student Affairs. He is also currently the Head Football coach, leading the team through a number of years and championships. Now, he can add Interim Principal to that long and impressive resume, all built up in service of SJM.
“He was one of the first people in admin I met at Memorial, and he set a really great first impression,” one SJM student said of the new interim principal, referring to Goston as the embodiment of what Memorial was built upon.
“My goal is to bring some clarity to our administrative structure and make sure everything we do is student-centered,” Goston said in the Panther Press about his new position at SJM, embracing the leadership role of a school he has poured all of his passion into. His years of service to this school has shown a love for SJM and its community; a love which shows why he was selected to lead SJM through this tumultuous school year.
With this new model that many Catholic schools in the country follow comes a number of changes. Many students may not even bat an eye as the transition occurs, but there will be a number of kids who want to know if the people in charge are still going to be effective. Well, the President position will still be just as secure with Burke, and many will still give a sigh of relief knowing that the student affairs of SJM will be falling into Goston's capable hands. Even if the position that Goston occupies is temporary, his legacy at SJM showcases the many ways that SJM is continuing to press on and move forward, in more ways than one.