APRIL 2021 • LONGISLANDPRESS.COM 23
SPOTLIGHT LONG ISLAND
CELEBRATING 100 YEARS OF EDUCATION
Westbury High School opened its
doors in 1921, first at the current
Westbury Middle School location
and now at its current residence.
Over the past 100 years, it has
been committed to providing
a positive environment for
teaching and learning that fosters
students’ willingness and desire
The school’s mission is to promote
academic excellence, social
development, and emotional
growth of our students as lifelong
learners who will contribute to
an ever-changing world and
global society. Its faculty is out to
continuously provide all students
with the opportunity to move
from one level of success to a new
level of challenge.
We recently interviewed David
Zimbler, principal of Westbury
High School. He discussed what
makes Westbury High School
special, the Covid-19 pandemic,
How long have you been
principal of Westbury High
School? This is my tenth year
in the district. I came into the
district as the middle school
principal, then moved into
the position of the high school
How long have you been in the
field of education and what was
it that attracted you to it? Twentyeight
years. I didn’t think about
teaching until I took a course in
college on educational psychology
and it just changed my whole
mindset about the field; it really
intrigued me and, based on that
class, it basically set my destiny.
What is your favorite part of the
job? Observing and working with
students and staff, watching them
grow and be successful. There’s
nothing better than that.
What makes Westbury High
School special? At our high
school, we work on creating a
culture of all in each and every
day. We’re all in to help our
students, to help each other.
Now more than ever, during this
pandemic, it’s really shown itself
even deeper in how it’s really
brought us together and made
us an even stronger team.
What impact has the pandemic
had on Westbury High School?
We started this school year
with parents able to choose two
instructional models for their
children. One was a hybrid
instruction model, in which
students would come to school
on one day and be virtual the
next, so every other day students
would be in the school building.
The other choice was a virtual
What percent of students have
been hybrid vs. remote-only this
school year? Approximately 60
percent to 40 percent – 60 percent
virtual, 40 percent hybrid.
How did you prepare for this
school year and the challenges
from the pandemic? The
planning sessions that took
place helped us accomplish the
goal at hand as a team. The team
was composed of high school
staff and administration. I have
to personally thank the high
school assistant principals and
director of guidance for all their
support as well! We worked
together all summer on the high
school plan of action. In addition,
our superintendent and Board
of Education trusted us and that
means a lot. We had a plan in
place, shared it with the high
school staff, conducted virtual
town hall meetings with parents
and answered any questions or
concerns, and it worked for us.
What are the main challenges of
your job that have been created
by the pandemic? Unfortunately,
a number of students are having
a tough time right now. A big
goal was to support staff and
students in acclimating them to
this new learning model. Staff
and our school administration
have continuously supported
each other and our students.
Consistent outreach and
interventions have continued to
support our students.
What role did technology
play at your school when the
pandemic started? We opened
up the school building and
high school staff members and
administration volunteered to
support technology distribution.
We had students come and get
Chromebooks for our one-onone
initiative at the high school.
We probably provided 700
Chromebooks for students from
March to April 2020.
Are there any mottos that you
use in your work? I would
say definitely “all in” and
Custom Computer Specialists
is proud to sponsor Spotlight
LI. Since 1979, Custom has been
dedicated to providing Long
Island’s schools, local government
agencies, healthcare facilities
and businesses with advanced
technology solutions and support.
To learn more about Custom
Computer, or to be considered for
a future Spotlight LI, please email
WESTBURY HIGH SCHOOL
Success Begins Here.
Get Started Today!
Westbury High School
Principal David Zimbler