LITTLE FALLS, NJ - The Banyan School Board of Trustees announces that Wendy McNeill has been promoted to the position of director, effective July 1. In this capacity, she will have responsibility for Banyan Elementary School, Banyan High School and Banyan LIFE Academy.
McNeill joined Banyan School in 2014 as principal of the elementary school. Prior to joining, she had been the director of special services in Little Falls for more than 13 years with responsibility for all students in the district requiring Special Education, as well as supervision and oversight of the department staff, operations, and budget.
Prior to taking on that role, she was a case manager on the child study team, a learning disabilities teacher consultant and a special education teacher. In addition, McNeill has served as president of the Passaic County Association of Special Services Administrators.
McNeill’s management team will include Marguerite Freeman, the principal of the Banyan High School and LIFE Academy, who joined the school in 2015. It will also include Patricia Walters-DiGiaimo, the new assistant principal of Banyan Elementary School. DiGiaimo most recently worked with the Regional Achievement Center of the New Jersey Department of Education and has held numerous positions related to Special Education. She will work with McNeill overseeing the elementary school.
Now in its 24th year, Banyan School is a private, non-profit, New Jersey Department of Education-approved school for students who learn differently. The program includes an elementary school in Fairfield, and a high school and LIFE (Learning Independence. Fostering Empowerment.) Academy in Little Falls. The approach in the elementary and high school programs is multi-sensory with a concentration on reading, language and communication. Using research-based methodologies and assistive technology, Banyan School’s staff helps students develop the skills necessary to learn and grow academically.
Just as important, the “Social4Life” program is designed to establish and foster social and life skills. Since 2010, the LIFE Academy has provided the academic and vocational support necessary for 18- to 21-year old students to gain independence inside and outside of the school environment.