Why I Want to be a School Leader
I want to be a school principal because I am committed to providing safe, challenging, and nurturing education experiences for students. I want to contribute to a school district with a remarkable reputation for their dedication to equitable and accountable education for diverse populations of students. But my interest in being an education leader is driven more by my personal commitment to meeting the needs of English learners. Since over 25% of California's student population is limited-English proficient, I believe that my background and experience as both a language acquisition specialist and devoted cross-cultural academic development advocate make me the right fit to be a school site leader.
In my nearly 19 years as an educator—from classroom teacher working with varied student populations such as those with disabilities and those with limited-English proficiency to Categorical Program Advisor for Title III and Title I programs at Los Unified School District, I have become a proponent of championing the needs of students with disadvantages. I’ve served as a curriculum and instruction content expert first for Fresno County Office of Education focusing on English Language Development and sheltered instruction and then for San Diego County Office of Education focusing on English Language Arts. I have provided professional development seminars for literally thousands of teachers across the State of California regarding best, first instruction for both reclassified fluent-English proficient students as well as students who have just arrived to our great country.
My work at Fresno County Office of Education as their resident expert in English learner programs as well as my role as an instructional leader at the district level at Los Angeles Unified School District provided me with many opportunities to work both in the system as well as on the systems that support the needs of ELs. I have co-written multiple English Learner Master Plans, served as a regional lead for Title III, Year 4 Program Improvement compliance reviews, and facilitated DELAC & ELAC meetings for multiple schools and districts in California's Central Valley.
However, what I can bring to school districts in addition to my leadership experience is over a decade of instructional and programmatic expertise. In my capacity as a School Assistance & Intervention Team (SAIT) lead and District Assistance & Intervention Team (DAIT) content expert, I have worked with schools of all sizes and districts in many different communities. I know what works and have proven my ability to coach others as they successfully re-direct the course of their educational organization toward increased student achievement. Of course, there is no silver-bullet or formula that gets this done in all settings. However, because of my years working with Program Improvement schools and districts, I have a very clear vision of what a thriving and innovative school looks like and the conditions necessary to bring such an environment to the local community. This, together with my deep understanding of the Common Core State Standards makes me the right person to support a collaborative effort dedicated to creating the best learning institution possible.
Finally, over the last year or so, I've become increasingly interested in moving back out into the field to lead a school site. I have learned quite a bit about the challenges educators and students face in my years as a county-level administrator and believe that I am more prepared than ever to put my knowledge and passion to work as a site administrator. Becoming a school site administrator makes sense to me at this point in my career because in that role, I will still be able to use my technical and leadership skills and re-align my career with my original passion as an educator-- working with students of diverse backgrounds and creating the conditions necessary for a school to thrive within its community.