Meet Mr. Schips, CDMS Principal

January 6, 2020Dotan Schips

Cairo-Durham Middle School welcomes its new Principal, Mr. Dotan Schips. He was appointed by the Board of Education in November 2019 and his first official day was January 6, 2020. 

Mr. Schips comes to Cairo-Durham after several years as an educator and administrator in Columbia County. He is looking forward to working with CDMS students, families and staff to ensure college- and career-readiness for all students. 

Here are a few things to help you get to know about Mr. Schips:

What are your job responsibilities/priorities as Principal?
As principal, I believe it's my job to cultivate contexts in which all students and adults can be successful every day. My number one priority is doing everything I can to ensure that happens consistently.

What goals do you hope to accomplish while working at Cairo-Durham (short term and long term)?
I hope to work closely with our incredible staff to collectively provide all students with the best possible education.

What are you most looking forward to?
I'm most looking forward to assimilating into the Cairo-Durham community. Everyone has been so kind and welcoming, and I'm very much looking forward to reciprocating that kindness.

What do you like most about your job?
My favorite part of the job is getting to work closely with amazing people who care just as much about kids as I do. Together, we can accomplish so much!

What is your background like – previous jobs, your education, etc.?
I completed my undergraduate work in English at SUNY Albany. I completed my master's degree at Syracuse University and I'm currently working on my doctorate at Sage College of Albany.

I previously taught 9th and 10th grade English in the New Lebanon Central School District. I also served as building principal at the Warren Street Academy in Hudson.

Before working here, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?
I'm not sure I've had any unusual jobs. In college, I worked at both Schenectady ARC and the Rainbow Express Daycare in Rotterdam. I loved both of those!

Tell us a bit about your life outside of school.
My favorite thing to do is spend time with my wife and our seven-month-old daughter, Kennedy. Additionally, I LOVE basketball. I'm a huge Knicks fan and Syracuse basketball fan. I also love traveling and reading.

What is the best advice anyone has given you?
"Growing up is about doing what you don't want to do, when you don't want to do it, simply because you know you have to."

My father shared that with me at a young age and I've since shared it with countless students.

What is your motto or personal mantra?
All kids are as academically successful and well-behaved as the adults in their lives teach them to be. My approach to work embodies this mantra.

Anything else you want to share?
I'm incredibly excited to join the Cairo-Durham team and I'm looking forward to working with the students, families, faculty, and community members to truly make a positive difference in the lives of our kids.