In the daily routine, students are typically surrounded by the friendly faces of well known teachers. This school year, several new staff additions are joining SLVHS, bringing fresh faces and new material to the previous well-worn routines of the past.
This school year, the school has Sheriff Kris Koenig watching over the campus. He grew up in the San Lorenzo Valley, graduating from San Lorenzo Valley High School in 1999. He used to be very athletically active, coaching football for nine years and wrestling for four years. He entered his career as a Sheriff in 2006. Koenig volunteered to be assigned to the campus for his first school-related assignment. During his interview, he said that as the new campus officer he hopes “to shine a positive light on law enforcement.” His ultimate goal is to show the students at SLVHS that officers of the law can bring safety and positivity. He also wants students to feel comfortable coming to him if they do not feel safe and are looking for serious help.
Mallory Mae Richards is our newest college prep, Biology, and AP Biology teacher. She is also a graduate of San Lorenzo Valley High. Throughout her career she has switched between teaching at SLVHS and in Hollister. Ms. Mae worked as a student teacher and occasional substitute for one year, learning under our current Vice-Principal Ned Hearn. Her prior experience in being a part of the school has given her a sense of nostalgia and comfort, saying, “Coming to SLV is like coming home.” Ms. Mae is aware of the large role she has inherited filling Mr. Hearn’s shoes and hopes to continue his legacy. Her ultimate goal is to inspire students to follow their dreams of becoming scientists, doctors, and people who truly care about the environment. Ms. Mae has a passion for law as well, and is currently working on bringing a speech and debate club back to SLVHS.
An admirable physical education teacher from the middle school, Chris Coulson, is known for inspiring his students to try their hardest. He is in charge of the Athletic Department and everyone is enthusiastic about Mr. Coulson joining this year. Coulson originally worked in corporate financing, his last job in the corporate world being Senior Vice President and Small Business Administration Lending Manager for Community Bank of the Bay. He then spent his first year teaching at Cupertino Middle School, before joining SLVMS for two years of P.E. Mr. Coulson is excited to join the High School, looking forward to meeting friendly new people he has met on campus and reconnecting with old students. “I am impressed with the strong community bond I feel on campus and the kindness I see the students show each other on a daily basis.” said Coulson about the overall aura of SLVHS. Coulson’s goal is to build a challenging, but fun, P.E.program that will motivate students to become physically active in their daily lives. “ I also try to inspire students by putting my money where my mouth is and exercising intensely.” He wants to connect with students by being real with them.
Natalie Wise, a new P.E. teacher, started her career in Punahou, Oahu acting as a substitute, coaching swimming, and teaching kayaking. She then taught Physical and Health Education at Le Jardin Academy in Kailua for about 10 years. Wise feels welcome and happy here with the staff and students, and her goal is to lead by example and make her classes fun and challenging. “I just want my students to find an activity or sport that they enjoy and will hopefully participate in for a lifetime. I want them to be healthy and active people.” Wise is ecstatic to have the opportunity to be apart of the SLVHS sports program.
The staff and students of San Lorenzo Valley High School are enthusiastic with these exciting new additions to the staff. Everyone is looking forward to spending a brand new school year with these fresh faces, and welcomes the new members of the SLVHS community with open arms.
By Cat Obsidian
The top left is Chris Coulson. Top right and bottom are Mallory Richards.