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A Success Story in the Making

Updated: Feb 11, 2020

PSAS Blog Post February 2020

We are coming up on our 3rd birthday, and we have already achieved so much. A Governor's Distinguished Improvement Award, two performance ratings, expansion of the physical spaces on campus, and extremely satisfied students and families. How did we do it? It wasn’t magic, and it wasn’t good luck. We achieved all this success because of the amazing teaching staff we assembled to open and run the school.

Mrs. Hendricks and Mrs. Coleman start our students off strong in kindergarten with the best possible academic and social foundation. In 1st grade, Mrs. Combs extends their early growth with reading, writing, and math to help embed the skills to ready them for 2nd grade. When they get to 2nd grade, Mrs. Monack raises the bar with lots of collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity in project-based learning and Paideia Seminar lessons. With those learning tools in place, students move to 3rd grade where Mr. Anaya exposes his learners to world citizenship, helping them develop their agency, and teaching them how to contribute to a more just society. Then in 4th grade, Mrs. Berg brings in design and engineering challenges that draw on the social and academic preparation the learners have experienced. Their ideas are made real and brought forward to improve our school and community. When, with a proud heart and tear in her eye, Mrs. Berg passes her students on to 5th grade, they start their preparation for middle school. They begin writing like emerging scholars, experimenting like aspiring scientists, and calculating like young mathematicians with Ms. Brundage. Finally, they hit middle school where Mrs. Hurley, Ms. Martinez, and Mr. Hite work as a team to open their eyes to all the possibilities the world holds for them. And although she moved on to run a school of her own, Mrs. McLaughlin maintains her supportive relationship with our learners and the instructional team, sharing her passion for and knowledge of the middle school.

During all these developmental experiences, Ms. Parks, Ms. Algien, Mr. Hirshon, and Mr. Lagrotteria expose the learners to the beauty of design and engineering based problem-solving. They learn to appreciate many styles of music. They participate in fun and important physical activities and produce many wonderful works of visual art. All these experiences are taught in ways that are accessible to all learners regardless of their background, or ability.

In support of our well-rounded education, support, and development missions, Mrs. Vigil, and Mrs, Bragazzi, meet with, and guide, students toward his or her best understanding and most skillful self. Mrs. Korinek visits every classroom, teaching her students the social and emotional lessons they’ll need throughout their whole lives. Mr. Aaron, Mr. Dee, Officer Coleman, Ms. Jessica, and Ms.Trudi take care of the students' spaces, their health, their safety, and their overall welfare. There isn’t a person on this staff who doesn’t ask, “What else can I do to support these learners?” “Who can I enlist to help me, help them?” The success this staff has created is nothing short of remarkable. It could not have happened without the contributions of every individual on the team. It wasn’t magic. It was hard work, dedication, and love. It has truly been the highlight of my career to be a part of this team.

Dr. Martinez

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