Your name: Kristie Orlando-Bangali
Your Title / Role: Rye Middle School Assistant Principal
MyRye.com: Describe your role on a day-to-day basis.
Orlando-Bangali: My mission as RMS Assistant Principal is to work with and support the building principal, Joseph DiGiovanni, in effectively executing the pillars of The Rye Commitment at the building level for students, staff and the Rye Community.
What drew you into the field of education?
Orlando-Bangali: I was inspired by several teachers I had growing up and I have always had a strong desire to help people.
What lessons did you learn early in your career that you still apply today?
Orlando-Bangali: Work hard, try your very best, ask for help when needed, and always, always, always put the needs of students first.
How did you find your position in Rye and why did you decide it was the best place for you?
Orlando-Bangali: I was hired by then RMS Principal Ann Edwards as an RMS Spanish teacher in 2008 after applying on OLAS, an online job search platform for schools. I immediately connected with the mission and goals of the District and have been in Rye ever since! I genuinely feel that the RCSD is my home.
What are your three top priorities for the 2021-22 school year?
- To collaborate with and support the work of the principal in the vision for students to receive an education that helps them become socially responsible, caring citizens who can think critically, communicate effectively, collaborate, and creatively solve problems in a diverse global environment.
- To support the school and District’s pursuit of excellence by providing professional learning for faculty and staff that is high quality, relevant, meaningful, and allows our school to evolve and expand its practices.
- To consistently reflect on our work in building a community, always strive for improvement, and ask the community to engage in meaningful discussions about our programs and all that we do to create and support an equitable, inclusive school system.
Over the last year, people have followed the recent Black Lives Matter and LGBTQ+ activity and news in Rye and around the world. What is your prescription for students, teachers and staff? How can the schools make the best positive contribution?
Orlando-Bangali: I feel that schools are a place where students’ growth and development should be supported and nurtured. As administrators and teachers, we are responsible for doing everything we can to help our students grow to their fullest potential.
Where did you grow up?
Orlando-Bangali: I grew up locally! I grew up in Pleasantville and attended the Byram Hill School District.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Orlando-Bangali: I enjoy reading and I love spending time with family and friends.
Kristie Orlando-Bangali is the Rye Middle School Assistant Principal and a mom to two beautiful children: Joseph (11) and Alexis (8). Her children and her, husband, Sunil, inspire and push her every day to be the best that she can be in and out of the classroom. Kristie considers herself to be a true lifelong learner.
She earned her BA in Spanish, focusing on Secondary Education from Muhlenberg College, and then pursued her MA in Bilingual and Transcultural Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. Kristie then went on to earn her Advanced Certificate in Educational Technology from PACE University. She is currently pursuing dual School and District Administration degrees at Manhattanville College and plans to graduate this fall.
Kristie started her teaching career in 2006 at PS/IS 194 in the Bronx before coming to Rye in 2008. In both roles, she taught middle school Spanish and was considered an innovator. In January 2018, she accepted the Instructional Technology Staff Developer position at the middle and high school and continued working in this capacity through June 2021 before becoming RMS assistant principal.
Kristie is a contributing author to the 2017 text Gamify Literacy: Boost Comprehension, Collaboration, and Learning. She was nominated as the 2020-2021 Teacher of the Year for the Rye City School by many colleagues and parents and was awarded this title in June 2020. As a passionate educator, Kristie strives to put students’ interests, well-being, and education first.