EdD., Administrative Policy and Urban Education, Fordham University, 1997
M.A. Administration and Supervision, Montclair State University, 1992
B.A. Psychology and Social Studies, Montclair State University, 1982
Recipient of the Montclair State University William A. Cuff Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Field of Education, 2006
Teacher of Psychology – New Jersey
Teacher of Social Studies – New Jersey
Supervisor – New Jersey
School Principal – New Jersey
Chief School Administrator – New Jersey
It is said that life isn’t about the destination but the journey. I have enjoyed the professional journey that brought me to Rider University where I am pleased to be working due to the outstanding students and faculty. I began my journey as a teacher in the Ridgewood Public School system where I taught Psychology and Social Studies. I was fortunate to be recognized as having leadership qualities and was selected to be a Grade Level Administrator. In this position I was responsible for the attendance, discipline, and class activities of over 700 students and enjoyed the position so much that I knew I had found my calling. I enrolled in a doctorate program and took an assistant principal position. I left the assistant principal position to become a principal and remained in the role of principal for twelve years. As a high school principal, I believed in and fostered shared leadership. As such, I was part of a team comprised of teachers, students, and other stakeholders that brought about many positive changes such as; digital portfolios as a graduation requirement, extended periods for learning, inquiry based lessons, and collaboration with a neighboring university and schools. These innovations led to our school being recognized as one of the top 100 in the state for a number of years. Desiring a further challenge, I took the position of Assistant Superintendent in charge of Curriculum and Instruction in another district. This position allowed me to experience leadership from a district perspective, which was quite different than leadership at the school level, and implement practices such as school based data teams and Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). In 2013, I began teaching at Rider University in the Department of Graduate Education, Leadership and Counseling. Presently, I teach Teacher Leadership Candidates as well as MAT students. I teach face to face and online courses.
Assistant Superintendent/Director of Curriculum and Instruction
Cedar Grove High School
Cedar Grove Memorial Middle School
Becton Regional High School
Kinnelon High School
Ridgewood High School
Grade Level Administrator
Teacher of Psychology/Social Studies
It is my desire as a educator to help students meet their full potential by providing an environment that supports appropriate risk-taking, and invites a sharing of ideas. I uphold and support the School of Education Mission of “fostering knowledgeable, committed, and reflective professionals.” I believe that in today's society, in order to help students meet their full potential, it is the educator's role to guide inquiry and model best practices in instruction. Students need to construct their own knowledge through the accessing of information, practicing skills and applying the skills learned in authentic situations.
In a Graduate Education Program, developing a curriculum around current issues in education stimulates the passion to learn. I also believe that, as an educator, it is my responsibility to model best practices in instruction. Therefore, my lessons are designed to encourage student engagement through a variety of activities, application of new skills, formative assessments, closure, reflection, and adherence to the curriculum. Making connections with students is another aspect of teaching that I believe is paramount to student success. Building trust and making connections allows for an open sharing of ideas. The elements of good teaching must be evident whether teaching “face to face” or on line. In fact, I believe that when teaching on line courses fostering a sense of community is essential as students need to have a level of trust when engaging in dialogue with colleagues.
Courses Taught at Rider
Supervisory/Teacher Leadership for Improved Instruction and Student Learning
Curriculum Design and Development for Innovation and Change
Assessment of Curriculum and Instruction to Improve the Performance of Teachers and Diverse Learners
Using Research Strategies and the Analysis of Data to Make Decisions in Schools
Issues in American Schools and Society
Group Process in Supervision for Creative Change and Collaboration
Seminar and Practicum in Supervision
Current Research Agenda
As a principal and assistant superintendent, I saw the value in shared leadership. This interest has led me to continue to explore and research the concept of Teacher Leadership. I am also researching the fostering of critical thinking through teacher leadership. My research agenda is progressing and I have projects in various stages.
Nappi, J.S. (2014). The Teacher Leader: Improving Schools by Building Social Capital through Shared Leadership. Delta Kappa Gamma Bulletin International Journal for Professional Educators, 80(4), 29-34.
Nappi, J.S. (2014). The Teacher Leader: Improving Schools by Building Social Capital through Shared Leadership. NASSP Principal's Research Review Supporting the Principal's Data Informed Decisions, 9(6). Reprinted with permission.
Nappi, J.S. (Spring 2004). Digital Portfolio Initiative at Cedar Grove High School. SYNERGY Bulletin of the Montclair University Network for Educational Renewal, Spring 2004
Nappi, J.S. (Fall 2004). Innovative Practices at Cedar Grove High School. SYNERGY Bulletin of the Montclair University Network for Educational Renewal.
Nappi, J.S. (Fall 2004). Cedar Grove and Glen Ridge Public Schools Summer Enrichment Program. SYNERGY Bulletin of the Montclair University Network for Educational Renewal.
Tracing School Site Expenditures in: Advances in Educational Productivity, H. Walberg (Ed.),1997
Spending and Student Achievement; Focus on Quality in Education, NASSP, Jan. 1999
Nappi, J.S. (2016). Group Dynamics and Successful Professional Learning Communities, Workshop accepted for presentation for Delta Kappa Gamma New Jersey Conference for Education, Somerset, NJ.
Nappi, J.S. (2015). Strengthening the Lead: Supporting Teaching in Teaching the Disciplines, Workshop accepted for presentation to the Critical Questions in Education Conference, Baltimore Maryland.
Nappi, J.S. (2015). A Focus on Professional Learning Communities. Presentation to Common Core Academy for Leaders & Learners, Rider University.
Nappi, J.S., Mazur, N. (2015). Role of Administration in Fostering Successful Teacher Leadership. Workshop accepted for presentation to the New Jersey Federal Program Administrators, Atlantic City, NJ.
Nappi, J.S., (2015). The Teacher Leader: Supporting School and Student Success; how it is working in NJ? Workshop accepted for presentation for Delta Kappa Gamma New Jersey Conference for Educators, Somerset, NJ.
Nappi, J.S., Fay, L., Pinelli, P. (2014). The Teacher Leader: Supporting School and Student Success. Workshop accepted for presentation to the New Jersey Federal Program Administrators, Atlantic City, NJ.
Nappi, J.S. (2014). The Teacher Leader. Workshop accepted for presentation to the Delta Kappa Gamma International Conference for Educators, Indianapolis, IN.
Nappi, J.S. (2014). Data Driven Decisions to Create Instructional Success. Invited workshop presentation to Rider's Teacher Leadership Community Institute, Lawrenceville, NJ.
Nappi, J.S., Krudzlo, M., Santini, K. (2014). Roles of the Teacher Leader: Supporting School and Student Success. Workshop accepted for presentation to the New Jersey Federal Program Administrators, Eatontown, NJ.
Nappi, J.S. (2011) Doing More with Less. New Jersey Department of Education Summer Conference. Keynote
Nappi, J.S. (1998) Striving for Goals. Association of Administrative Professionals. Invited keynote.