is an early riser. In Wallingford, where he has served as an assistant principal for two years, he arrives at the gym or pool by 4:45 a.m. for a work-out before heading to his school.
The former Little League player who now serves as a volunteer with one of his sons’ T-ball team has learned not to let that practice slide, because, as he puts it, “By the end of the day, it gets very hectic.”
On July 1, he will add a commute from his Wallingford home to his schedule, because that is when he is expected to begin his tenure as the new principal of the l.
“For me, it was a fit,” said Carbone Monday evening after his introduction by at the meeting.
“I believe the interview process is a reciprocal process. While Orange is looking for the 'right match' for their job, I want to be sure that I find the ‘right match’ for me and my career goals,” Carbone said earlier this week. “I am looking to work in a place that makes decisions based on what is best for kids, is collaborative, welcoming, and has a strong sense of community. As I have reflected during this process, I am confident that Orange is that place.”
Education matters to Carbone, and, as he thinks back, a number of incidents emerge as the cause.
A self-described great reader and writer, his handwriting, he remarked, was always a disaster. Having completed a school assignment as a child that was not neatly written, he said his father sat him down and said, “You need to be proud of everything you turn in. Does this make you proud?”
“Education,” Carbone said he learned, “is an important part of your life. It represents who you are.”
He also describes himself as a "chatty kid" who liked to talk to and engage his teachers. “They didn’t stifle my creativity . . . . They allowed me to share.”
He described his teachers as “compassionate and supportive people, and the schools were welcoming and reminded me of a family. The teachers recognized my individual talents and celebrated them.”
From those experiences arose his conviction that “I entered the field of education because I was inspired by the teachers I had as a child.” Carbone added, “They were compassionate and supportive people, and the schools were welcoming and reminded me of a family. The teachers recognized my individual talents and celebrated them. For these reasons, learning and school was fun, exciting, and something I looked forward to.
“I later found that I could share my enthusiasm for education by becoming a teacher and impacting children in the positive way that others did for me.”
A native of Wallingford, Carbone graduated from Sheehan High School. He received a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from the University of Connecticut and a sixth year degree in educational leadership from Southern Connecticut University. From there, his enthusiasm for education took him around the state—first to Monroe, where he taught for nine years, then to Berlin and next to Wallingford, the district he will leave in a matter of days.
Along the way, he “bumped” into a woman named Mariza from Mexico while each was on vacation. She eventually took a position in Connecticut—she now serves as a Spanish teacher at the Amity Middle School—and one year after she re-located the couple became engaged. They now have two sons: Joseph, a third grader, and Daniel, who is completing the first grade.
What engaged BOE Chair Jeanne Consiglio about Carbone during the interview process was his capacity “to make things”—the acronyms, all the professional terms—“real.”
The self-described formerly “chatty kid” was also lauded by the BOE Vice-Chair Keith Marquis as “personable.”
To that, Carbone would likely add the characteristic tolerant.
To him, educating the whole individual is essential. A school community that recognizes individual talents, whether they be skiils in math or playing the violin, will go “a long way toward building tolerance and understanding,” the new principal said.