Hop Brook principal to take reins at City Hill

Hop Brook Elementary School Principal Brian Hendrickson will be the principal at City Hill Middle School next school year. –RA ARCHIVE


NAUGATUCK — The Board of Education has appointed Brian Hendrickson, the principal of Hop Brook Elementary School, as principal at City Hill Middle School for next school year.

Hendrickson on July 1 will replace Christine Blanchard, who has been principal at the middle school for four years and is retiring after 34 years working in the borough’s public school system.

“I’m very thankful for the opportunity,” Hendrickson said. “I believe in the direction the district is headed.”

Hendrickson, 36, lives in Farmington and has been Hop Brook’s principal for two years. Before that, he taught sixth- and eighth-grade social studies at Hillcrest Middle School in Trumbull, where he also headed the social studies department, sponsored extracurricular clubs and coached basketball.

City Hill enrolls more than 700 seventh- and eighth-grade students, double the size of Hop Brook. Hendrickson, however, said the transition would not be too challenging because he has worked with middle-schoolers before.

Hendrickson graduated from Fordham University and Albany Law School. He was admitted to the State Bar of California before getting his teacher’s certification from Southern Connecticut State University and a sixth-year certificate from the University of Connecticut.

He makes more than $120,000 this year.

“We are fortunate to have among our ranks an outstanding administrator who thoroughly understands the opportunities, challenges and rewards of middle school teaching and learning,” Superintendent of Schools John Tindall-Gibson said in a press release.

Under Hendrickson, scores on the Connecticut Mastery Test improved enough to put Hop Brook in “safe harbor” last year after students, who attended Prospect Street Elementary School before the reconfiguration two years ago, failed to meet proficiency levels prescribed by the federal No Child Left Behind Act.