Elementary Principal Letter

Dear ANCS Elementary Families,

This week during our school-wide morning meeting we are talking about gratitude. Specifically, having gratitude for the simple things we already have. Our culture often promotes the idea that if we just had (fill in the blank), we would be happier. I am asking us to focus on the abundance that we already have and to be thankful for it. There are so many things to be grateful for right now.

Many of you know that when I first came to work here, I taught fifth grade. I was ever so thankful to be part of a community that was deeply dedicated to the growth and development of young people. After teaching for many years and in several different schools, this was a welcome change. In fact, I was drawn to this school because of its small size, constructivist pedagogy and its reputation for excellence in education. Being a charter opened doors for innovation in the classroom and it was refreshing to work closely with parents and teachers who shared the same vision for our children.  

When I became our curriculum and assessment specialist, I was able to see our school from a new perspective, as a whole unit. I was so grateful to work closely with all our teachers and staff whose dedication was inspiring. We worked together to map out curriculum, analyze data and reflect on our practice. While our school is rich with history and tradition, we targeted areas that needed improvement, and we made it happen. 

Now that I have been the principal of the elementary campus for 12 years, I have developed an even greater sense of what it takes to make ANCS such a unique and special learning environment and place to work. It is all of us working together and the sense of pride in knowing that we all have some gift to contribute. We don’t need to seek a lot from outside of our walls. Teachers, administrators, parents and students all working together to bring our mission to life is something for which we should all be thankful. It is rare to find a school that honors the views and opinions of all of its community members. On a daily basis, I witness students feeling empowered to speak up for change, parents expressing their concerns or ideas, teachers and staff being part of defining who we are, and collaboration between these groups on many levels.  All of this contributes to what sets our school apart—we are a true community, a school family!

I find great joy in my work each day, and for that I am grateful.

I wish you all a healthy, peaceful and safe Thanksgiving break.