Looking at North Penn through a fresh perspective: Mrs. Amy Linn

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Looking at North Penn through a fresh perspective: Mrs. Amy Linn

Mrs. Amy Linn has been a part of NPHS  administration for 15 years and looks forward to see what North Penn's future holds.

Mrs. Amy Linn has been a part of NPHS administration for 15 years and looks forward to see what North Penn's future holds.

Mrs. Amy Linn has been a part of NPHS administration for 15 years and looks forward to see what North Penn's future holds.

Mrs. Amy Linn has been a part of NPHS administration for 15 years and looks forward to see what North Penn's future holds.

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TOWAMENCIN-  The saying “change is inevitable” is very familiar to Mrs. Amy Linn. After fifteen years in North Penn High School administration, she has witnessed many shifts in leadership and in every home office. Each of these changes has brought a unique perspective to Linn as she continues to look towards North Penn’s future.

Linn joined North Penn High School administration in 2004. Prior to that, Linn was a student teacher at Pennbrook Middle School and then she landed a job as a special education teacher at Penndale Middle School.

“My senior of high school I was the editor of my school newspaper and I think [I thought] ‘this isn’t necessarily what I want to do.’ I started working with our Life Skills students in my cooking class. That kind of opened my eyes to a new population of students, and I got so much enjoyment out of it, that I switched my major in college to Special Education,” explained Linn.

The Life Skills course is a class provided to special needs students to help them become successful in the future as they live and work in a community. In college, Linn aimed to work with Autistic students, and then shifted her focus on Emotional Support students. As an administrator, Linn emphasizes the importance of unified programs at North Penn. 

“I think we have an amazing special ed department here at the high school that really brings that inclusiveness to our students, partnering up our general ed students with the special ed students. That is something that I’d like to become more involved in. I kind of feel like I’ve lost that initial path that got me into education,” described Linn. 

During her time at Penndale Middle School, Linn was the department chair of the Special Education department, which led her to take an administrative position at the high school. As the assistant principal of home office F040, Linn has the opportunity to organize senior class activities and help students plan for their future. A piece of advice she gives students is to recognize that every college student experiences a different journey.

“You have to keep everything in perspective, but I wish I had looked out more for myself and not necessarily what my family situation was at the time. At the time, I thought it was important that I was home and it was too much of a financial burden on my family to go away to college or on myself. I paid for college one hundred percent myself,” explained Linn. 

Linn attended Millersville University for a semester and then attended Bucks County Community College. She then graduated from Gwynedd Mercy University. 

“Looking back on it, I wish I had plowed through that and stayed at Millersville, but I also question if I would be where I’m at today. I’m a strong believer that everything happens for a reason and I think the path was to be at Gwynedd and had I not gone to Gwynedd, I don’t know if I would have student taught at North Penn,” added Linn. 

From Linn’s perspective, senior year is full of energy. Students begin the year scrambling to complete college applications by certain deadlines, but they end the year with lively moments like senior prom and graduation.

“I love the seniors. It’s just been amazing to see how much growth they’ve had since the sophomore year to now. Aside from that, I just think it’s such an exciting time. It’s scary too for the students, but from my perspective, it’s just such an exciting time to see what’s going to unfold for them when they leave from here,” explained Linn. 

The class of 2020 is the first group of students Linn has witnessed go through all three grades. Until 2017, home offices were organized by alphabet with all three grades included together. For over ten years, Linn had been accustomed to that original home office model. 

“I think there are both pros and cons to both models. I love being able to focus my energy on all things [involving] seniors, but then when you go back to sophomores it’s like ‘wow what do we do with sophomores’ because that was almost three years ago by the time I revisit it again,” said Linn. 

With the new home office model, Linn now collaborates more with Mr. Matthew Edwards, the other assistant principal in F040. It is easier to share ideas with each other since each home office only has students from a single grade level. 

“I think the biggest challenge for me is not always living in the past, but keeping a fresh perspective. Not that I’m opposed to change. Change is difficult for anybody. Just because we did it that way doesn’t mean we have to continue doing it [that way]. The change with administrators has helped me keep that perspective,” said Linn.

One of the main responsibilities Linn has maintained is organizing the fundamental aspects of student’s education like class schedules, program of studies, and bell schedules. 

“My favorite part is truly the inner workings of the building and building the schedule. I love that puzzle and the complexity involved in how to get everyone scheduled in the courses they want. Also with any varied bell schedule, I’ve been behind it. That’s my favorite part, where I can schedule and organize things,” explained Linn. 

Linn had considered the possibility of climbing the administrative ladder, but for now she is quite content with her position at NPHS.

 

“At this point in my life and my career, it’s just not something that I want. I have younger kids. I like being the person behind the person that looks good. I like making sure everything goes smoothly so that Mr. Nicholson can look good. Or whether it was Dr. Bauer or Mr. Hynes. I like planning and trying to anticipate what is coming up and what needs to be done so that [everything] is taken care of and whoever [the principal is] can just roll with it,” described Linn. 

Linn has experienced many once in a lifetime opportunities through her position at North Penn. She has met President Clinton, actress Elizabeth Berkley from Saved by the Bell,  musical group Hall and Oates, and NFL player Brandon McManus. 

I think there has been a lot of great things that have happened while I’ve been here, but what I’m most proud of is the fact that every year we can start off school without a problem. Students have their schedules. The building is ready to go and I kind of take ownership of that”

— Mrs. Amy Linn, NPHS Assistant Principal

“I think there has been a lot of great things that have happened while I’ve been here, but what I’m most proud of is the fact that every year we can start off school without a problem. Students have their schedules. The building is ready to go and I kind of take ownership of that,” added Linn.