Michael Barraco, a long-time teacher at West Haven High School, has been promoted to Assistant Principal following approval by the West Haven Board of Education Monday night.
"I am honored to accept the Assistant Principal position at West Haven High School,” said Barraco. “I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to the educational growth and development of our students and to work collaboratively with our amazing staff and administrative team. I look forward to the challenges and rewards that this role will bring, and I am committed to upholding the school's values and mission in every aspect of my work.
Thank you for entrusting me with this responsibility and allowing me to serve the students and families of West Haven in this capacity. I am excited and eager to begin this new chapter in my career."
Barraco has been teaching at WHHS since 2012. Throughout his career, he has taught courses such as STEM Education, Introduction to Engineering Design, Cybersecurity, Civil Engineering and Architecture, Principles of Engineering, Integrated Science, Environmental Science, and Astronomy. As an educator, he has helped guide students to adopt a problem-solving mindset by engaging them in compelling, real-world challenges, while also helping them become better collaborators and thinkers to prepare them with the skills needed for competitive high-pay/high-reward careers in technology. He thrives at accommodating the needs of students with special abilities and challenges, and has worked extensively with ELL (English Language Learners) and high-needs students.
In addition to teaching, Barraco also coaches the girls’ tennis team at WHHS (2020-present) and the VEX Robotics Competition Team (2015-present), while also serving as the Title IX Coordinator and a Project Lead the Way Master Teacher.
“In the classroom, on the court, and amidst the gears and circuits of VEX robotics, he has not only inspired young minds, but also cultivated a culture of curiosity and excellence,” said Principal Dana Paredes. “I am confident this experience will serve him well in his promotion to Assistant Principal in charge of Student Success.”
Barraco received a Bachelor of Science degree in Environment and Mineral Engineering from Pennsylvania State University College of Earth and Mineral Science in 2003. He also obtained a Master of Secondary Education, STEM Education degree from Grand Canyon University (2012) and a Certificate of Advanced Study, 6th Year Degree from Sacred Heart University Isabelle Farrington College of Education (2019).
In addition to his higher education degree, Barraco also holds certifications in the following: teacher of general science (034), technology education (047), intermediate administrator (092), and a 5-year coaching certificate.