Peg’s Steady Regime

Margaret Regan, known familiarly on the Island as Peg, will leave a huge pair of shoes to fill when she steps down as Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School principal at the end of the current school year. By every account Mrs. Regan has been an excellent administrator, leader and role model for adolescents in her nine years at the Island’s only high school. She is smart, seasoned, level-headed, keen-eyed, open-minded, deeply caring and possessed of good judgment and good character. She has a ready smile and a twinkle in her eye and is unafraid to confront tough decisions.

One recent example that stands out took place during the last school year when the high school committee voted, after much agonizing, to allow drug sniffing dogs to come into the high school. Mrs. Regan responded immediately by announcing that the students would be notified ahead of time before the drug sweep. Her explanation was at once clear and admirable: the purpose of the sweep was to get drugs out of the school, not arrest the students, she said.

Always putting the students first — this has been Peg Regan’s trademark over the last decade. Now Mrs. Regan, at age fifty seven, is ready to move on to a different phase of her life and career. Full of energy and ideas, she plans to possibly return to teaching and her assessment of the state of education today is both incisive and sobering. “We’re losing the creativity — the artistry — of what teaching means,” she told the Gazette in an interview early this week.

Clearly Mrs. Regan has many contributions left to make to the world of education and we wish her well as she turns to pursue new vistas. Meanwhile, the high school is lucky to have her for the rest of the school year and the school committee now carries a heavy responsibility to fill what ranks among the most important professional positions on the Island.

And as they turn to the task at hand, committee members would do well to take their cues from Peg Regan, whose high school report card is marked with straight As for her leadership and steady hand at the tiller.