Principal Eric Johnson goes to New York

Johnson goes to the College Board AP form conference in New York


Photo submitted by Eric Johnson

Principle Eric Johnson meets Good Morning America newscaster Robin Roberts on Oct. 25 at Times Square.

Jessica Glaszczak, Print Managing Editor

Principal Eric Johnson, along with other District personnel, went to a four-day AP (Advanced Placement) conference in New York City beginning Oct. 24 and had the chance to meet a famous news personality in Time Square before the conference start.

“I was able to meet Robin Roberts [a newscaster for Good Morning America],” Johnson said via email from New York City.

Before going to a class session on Oct. 25, Johnson went to Times Square to see where GMA (Good Morning America) is filmed. He was representing Winnetonka with a “Tonka in the House” t-shirt.

“She came outside to speak to the guests, and she stopped to talk to me and take a picture,” Johnson said. “I told her I was from Kansas City and the principal of Winnetonka. When she went back in she told Michael Strahan [former professional football player and anchor for GMA] I was a principal and they asked the crew to invite me into the studio to watch the show. She came back over to talk to me so she could tell our faculty and students “good morning” via a video message.”

Johnson quickly sent the photo and the video to the Winnetonka staff. While it was exciting to see Roberts and be invited to the set of GMA, Johnson has what he considers more important tasks to accomplish while in the Big Apple. He, along with deputy superintendent Jill Hackett, director of advanced studies Kyle Anderson and the other North Kansas City School District principals are attending the College Board AP conference. Johnson hopes to gain knowledge about AP classes and accessibility to students while at the conference.

“The purpose of the conference is about access,” Johnson said. “How do we get all students access to challenging curriculum and provide them the supports necessary to be successful in college level classes at the high school-level and beyond.”

Johnson said that he hopes to learn how to continually break down barriers to access, how to close “information gaps” that exist, and how to close participation gaps in Advanced Placement courses when it comes to traditionally underrepresented groups such as African American Hispanic students, and students who receive free/reduced lunch.

“For me, the goal is not only about getting students access to AP classes,” Johnson said. “I also want to gain knowledge to be more intentional in developing personalized plans of study for all students.”