Board Of Education Names Principals For FHS, Franklin Park School

Frank Chmiel, left, was named Franklin High School’s new principal, and Purvi Shah was named Franklin Park School’s new principal, at the Jan. 25 school board meeting.

The Board of Education dipped into the district’s “farm team” Jan. 25 to pick principals for Franklin High School and Franklin Park School.

Frank Chmiel, a vice principal at Franklin Middle School, was named to take the helm at FHS, and Purvi Shah, a Franklin Park School vice principal, was named to be that school’s new principal.

Chmiel replaces interim principal Beth Ebler, who was named to the position following the abrupt resignation of former principal Cheryl Clark in October, 2017. Chmiel starts his new position on March 1, said schools Superintendent John Ravally.

Shah replaces current FPS principal Nicole Sury Bevere, who was tapped to become the first principal of the new school being built on Claremont Road. Shah assumes her new role on Feb. 1, Ravally said.

Chmiel, who was an administrator at FHS prior to he transfer to the middle school, said being named principal is “a dream come true.”

“It’s been a passion of mine to be principal of Franklin High School,” he said. “What helped get me through the process was that I remembered I wanted to model for students that if they don’t give up on a dream and they work hard enough and keep learning, they could achieve their dreams. That’s what this is for me.”

As far as his plans for the school, Chmiel said, “I’m biased, I feel that Franklin High School is the greatest high school in the state of New Jersey and I’m not going to rest until it is recognized in the state as a perennial Top 25 powerhouse school year in and year out.”

“I want everyone talking about Franklin High School, I want the community to have full faith and belief in the school and know that this is their school,” he said. “For all of the students, I want them to know the opportunities they have after they graduate. I want to work with everyone in the building; I want to work with students, their families, faculty, staff and the community together on one vision for excellence for all students at Franklin High School.”

In the audience was former FHS interim principal Thomas DiGianci,whom Chmiel called his mentor.

“He came out tonight to support me,” Chmiel said.

Shah said she “couldn’t be happier” with her new position.

“I am so excited to take on this new role,” she said. “I have served so many roles at Franklin Park School, from teacher of multiple grades to administrative intern to master scheduler, vice principal most recently. To take on this new role as principal, I just couldn’t be happier.”

“I look forward to continue to work with the families, the staff, the students,” she said. “I enjoy coming to work every day.”

Shah also thanked Sury Bevere, who she called her mentor, for the support she said Sury Bevere gave her.

“I’m hoping I can follow in her footsteps and take Franklin Park School and make it my own,” she said.



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