top of page

Albert E. Gibbons

Submitted by Veronica Gonzalez, Chair of the Wrentham School Committee.

Have you ever wondered where Gibbons Lane got its name? If you’ve set foot in the Delaney School gymnasium any time over the last 20 years, you may have made the connection. Now known as the Gibbons Gym, there is a bronze plaque on the wall next to the gymnasium entrance honoring longtime Wrentham educator and sports aficionado Al Gibbons.

Mr. Gibbons started his career in Wrentham at the Old Center School in 1964, when he was hired to teach 5th grade. He was immediately well liked for his warm smile, outgoing personality, and ability to make a connection with just about anyone with whom he engaged in conversation. Al was the type of teacher who set the bar high and, because of his ability to connect with his students, they unhesitantingly found ways to meet and exceed it. One former student recalled a memory of Al…”I had surgery and could not go to school, as I was wheelchair bound and I had to have a tutor. As a child, I didn’t care for Mr. G, as he had given me a D in history the previous semester. Well, when it came time for the tutor to come to my house, guess who it was? Yup, Mr. Gibbons. Suddenly, I had to put the work in and my grade went from a D to an A in history. Go figure ... I liked him after that!”

After six years of teaching 5th and 6th grade, Al went into administration. He served as assistant principal for 18 months before becoming principal of the Wrentham Elementary School - a title he held for nearly 30 years. As such, he became legendary for his incredible people skills and making every employee feel welcomed, appreciated, and part of the WPS family. As new employees were hired, Al would give a multi-hour tour of both the school and the town itself, dropping in every single teacher’s classroom to make introductions and then driving around Wrentham in his station wagon for a guided tour, proudly sharing landmarks and miscellaneous bits of information about the town. These tours, a right of passage for new employees, became epically famous and are still fondly remembered by WPS staff members today. A former employee once joked about the length and detail of Al’s tours, saying he was expecting to be dropped off at Wrigley Field by the end of it. Al found tremendous pride in giving educators the full picture of our wonderful community, boasting about the local sports, and ensuring his staff understood the diverse backgrounds of their students.

In addition to making his mark in the Wrentham Public Schools as an educator, Mr. Gibbons started traditions for the students that live on today. An avid sports fan, he recognized the value in team-based activities and often encouraged all students to participate in one way or another. He created the Wrentham Little League program, which still runs strong today with multiple teams at every grade level. Additionally, many WPS students over the years have enjoyed the