Our School > Administration

Dr. Marie Kim


Welcome to McKinley Elementary School!  As the Principal, I work with the staff, parents, and community to uphold McKinley’s long-valued traditions of setting high expectations for our students while supporting them to reach their full potential in a warm and welcoming learning environment.  At McKinley, we provide a well-rounded education with active learning experiences; extra-curricular opportunities to foster an appreciation for the arts, culture, and nature; and a character education program with Schoolwide Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports that teaches students to have H.E.A.R.T. 

Prior to McKinley, I was the Assistant Principal at elementary schools in Abington, PA; Allentown, PA; and Jersey City, NJ; as well as a Special Education teacher in Jersey City, NJ.  My educational background includes a B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh, which included an opportunity to participate the Semester at Sea program where I traveled the world aboard a ship; an M.A. from New Jersey City University; and an Ed.M. from Teachers College, Columbia University. Currently, I am a doctoral candidate at Gwynedd Mercy University. 

I enjoy collaborating with the McKinley community to educate our students.  It is our responsibility to not only teach them the content knowledge but to also teach them how to think critically, problem-solve, and adapt to the changing world.  We also need to instill in our students a love of learning and a thirst for knowledge and personal growth.  We believe in working together, because at McKinley, we know that we are BETTER TOGETHER.


Mr. Rob Howe

Assistant Principal

The 20-21 school year will be the strangest year I have experienced in my 28 years in the Abington School District.  I expect there will be confusion and questions throughout the year and I encourage the McKinley families to reach out as we work together through this school year.  The dynamic and dedicated McKinley staff is still in place and we have prepared to make “school” as normal as possible for the children.  This year I will continue being the Assistant Principal at McKinley and the Department Chair for APEX (gifted education).  My two roles will allow for multiple opportunities to support the students of McKinley.

I will continue being a part of McKinley’s HEART program, which is designed to help promote positive work habits and behaviors during the school day.  I truly believe my role as an educator is to help every child feel success, both academically and socially, hopefully on a daily basis.  One of my main goals as an educator has always been to help create an environment where kids want to come to school and where they understand that effort is recognized and appreciated, both in and out of the classroom.

As we begin the 2020-2021 school year, if you have questions/concerns, the easiest way to reach me, due to my dual role for the district, is through e-mail at Roberthowe@abington.k12.pa.us.  An e-mail allows me to collect any needed information, prior to me reaching out, to discuss the idea/concern.  However, if an issue seems too urgent for e-mail, then please do not hesitate to call me at 215-663-0430 ext 6210. 

Here’s to another successful school year at McKinley Elementary!



Mr. Richard Welsh, Elementary Curriculum Specialist

It is an honor and privilege to begin this year as Curriculum Specialist at McKinley Elementary. I began my teaching career in the Abington School District at Willow Hill Elementary School, where I taught grades four and five for the duration of six years. During my time in Abington, I have served on various district wide committees and assisted with events to help our schools continue to excel in the field of academics and character development.

I graduated with honors from Gwynedd-Mercy College with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. While teaching, I earned my Master of Arts in Educational Leadership and Principal Certification from Gwynedd-Mercy College.

I am eager to continue serving the community and helping our students succeed in the classroom both academically and socially. My leadership style is one that revolves around collaborative data driven decision-making, parent and community involvement, and the belief that all students can succeed with the proper supports and systems in place. Utilizing the hard work of our highly qualified administration, staff, and parents, I know our school can continue implementing research-based initiatives and extracurricular activities to help our students grow and prosper in today’s society.

I am looking very forward to meeting our new McKinley families and having another successful year!

Contact Mr. Welsh at RichardWelsh@abington.k12.pa.us

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Ms. Maria Vaccaro

Supervisor of Special Education

Hello!  I am Mrs. Maria Vaccaro and I am looking forward to serving as the Supervisor of Special Education at McKinley.  I began my experience as an administrator at Abington School District in the 2017-2018 school year when I served as an Acting Supervisor of Special Education, Acting Assistant Principal and Acting Curriculum Specialist.  I previously taught Special Education at Copper Beech Elementary and Mastery Charter Schools, Smedley Elementary in Philadelphia. 
I earned a dual bachelor’s degree in Elementary and Early Childhood Education from Duquesne University.  I then received my master’s degree in Special Education from the Lynch School of Education at Boston College where I was a Donovan Urban Scholar.  I received my administrator certificate at Temple University.  Throughout college, I participated in the Best Buddies Program and created volunteer opportunities for students at the Children’s Institute as well as through the Special Olympics in Pittsburgh, PA.  
I am honored to be part of the McKinley Elementary community.  I believe that building a collaborative relationship among teachers, parents, administrators and the community is critical to the success of each student. I am eager to apply my experience with co-teaching, inclusion, and providing academic and behavioral support.  I am committed to ensuring that we meet the needs of each student.