Interview with Principal Joyce Perley

York Prep Principal Joyce Perley loved math ever since she could remember and dreamed of becoming a teacher. A native of Newburyport, Massachusetts, she completed a B.S. in Mathematics at Bates College in Maine and began teaching at several private boarding schools in New England.

Motivated to address students’ needs “in other ways besides learning to solve an equation,” Ms. Perley returned to school and earned a master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling from Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. With her typical energy and drive, she continued to teach while also working as a counselor for students with disabilities.

Ms. Perley had visited New York during student trips and was drawn to the excitement of the big city and the easy access to its plethora of remarkable venues and events. Making her move to the Big Apple in 1998, she joined the York Prep faculty. The fit was terrific. She was appointed Middle School Dean in 2001, a role she still fills along with teaching two sections of Middle School math.

Ms. Perley enjoys being fully engaged in the life of the school as administrator, teacher, and counselor. She can be seen darting around the school building from early in the morning until late in the day. Fellow faculty members and students alike count on her for support and admire her keen fashion sense.

A longtime runner, Ms. Perley has participated in numerous road races and more than 20 marathons, including the New York City and Boston events. At present she trains as a tri-athlete; her involvement was gradual, but she is now committed to working with a team of fellow cyclists/swimmers/runners to compete in various events like the New York City and USA triathlons. “It’s still nicer to go bike-riding in New England,” she said.

With innate compassion and the perspective of a marathon runner, Ms. Perley’s advice to her students is “be patient with yourself.”