Following former Principal Dr. Kathy McFarland leaving the school, prior Assistant Principal of Orange Middle School, Christopher Saiben, has moved up to become an assistant principal at OOHS. Saiben will fill the position of Trond Smith, who has become interim principal of the school.
As an assistant principal, Saiben has various responsibilities covering a lot of different areas, many of which students may not even be aware of.
“I work with sophomores and half the seniors. I take care of the ACT, I work with guidance, performing arts and science departments specifically, so I take care of teacher evaluations and any support with hiring those positions there. I take care of a lot of attendance stuff, so I have conversations with students who are not showing up, issue Wednesday schools, that sort of thing. I also cover extracurricular events, and I have 10th period lunch duty this month, too,” Saiben said.
Even though the job has the same title, the new responsibilities also vary slightly from those at the middle school.
“The biggest difference is, at Orange Middle School, there’s the principal, and there’s the assistant principal. There, discipline isn’t split up based on grade level. You have all of it as the assistant principal. And you have all of the students with AP’s and special education. We have to split up things more at the high school based on the size, since there’s over twice as many kids here. There’s no way one person could do all of those things,” Saiben said.
Some would say making the transition from one place to another is made much easier while surrounded by familiar faces. Luckily for Saiben, being assistant principal at the middle school for a few years has made it easier to create relationships with students and made the switch to a new school much smoother.
“So far, the transition has been pretty good. The nice thing for me, where I’m ‘new’ but not new, is that I’ve worked with a lot of staff members just from being in the district for 10 years. And also, coming here and already knowing students and seeing familiar faces in the halls has made it easier, I feel very welcome and I couldn’t be happier to be here,” Saiben said.
Junior Sydney Krupp was a former student of Saiben’s at Orange Middle School.
“I remembered Mr. Saiben from middle school because he was always really nice and helpful. I thought he was great in middle school, and I’m happy he’s now at
the high school,” Krupp said.