SWAMPSCOTT — Dennis Kohut will take the reins as the high school’s next principal, effective July 1.
Superintendent Pamela Angelakis made the announcement at a school committee meeting Wednesday night. Kohut, who has served as the assistant principal since the start of the 2017 school year, will replace Lawrence Murphy, the interim principal since last March.
“I’m honored to accept this position,” said Kohut. “In a way, it’s like you tossed me the keys to a Ferrari or something.”
He began his career at the high school in 2006 as an English teacher and took on the role of department head in 2016, according to Angelakis. She said Kohut, along with Dean of Students Colleen Cull-Finn, really stepped up after former principal Robert Murphy went on medical leave last March.
Angelakis said the collaborative work of Kohut, Cull-Finn, and Lawrence Murphy is what drove the school’s honor of being recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School last year. Only half of one percent of schools in the U.S. have received this recognition, she said.
In Kohut’s time as assistant principal, he has shown he is a proven entity to the school and the community, said Angelakis.
“He is well respected by the teachers, staff, students, and parents,” she said. “I value him as a colleague.”
The father of two lives in Concord with his wife, Melissa.
He holds a master’s in School Administration from Endicott College and a master’s in Education from the University of Massachusetts-Boston, according to Angelakis. As part of his master’s program at Endicott, Kohut spent the 2014-2015 school year as a principal intern, getting hands-on experience in administration areas such as academics, curriculum, scheduling, and MCAS.
“I have been very happy in all my roles at Swampscott High and I am especially pleased to be given this opportunity,” Kohut said. “After more than 12 years here, this is home. We are blessed with great students, a dedicated faculty, and strong community support.”