This year at SLVHS, students, faculty, and parents are greeted by a handful of new faces, as well as some familiar ones coming down from SLVMS.
SLVHS’s new AP Bio and Agricultural Biology teacher, Aria Bauman, hopes to have a positive impact on students by making science more tangible and interesting. She has taught APES and Bio Lab at Pacifica High School in Oxnard, California. Ms. Bauman was intrigued by our campus’ greenhouse and emphasis on agriculture. She had heard great things regarding the students and people at SLVHS. “Everyone has been very positive and friendly so far,” she says, “ I am really looking forward to a new year with new students.”
Eric Silva, SLV’s new Math 3 teacher, has been teaching for almost a year now. When asked about SLVHS’s most intriguing features, he responded: “The small community feel, the beautiful scenery, and the friendly faculty/student body. I knew from the moment I stepped on campus that I was home.” He believes SLV has the perfect mix of autonomy and support for a teacher. “ I feel SLV really allows me to strive to become the teacher I want to be and supports me through every step. The students at SLV are some of the most respectful, intelligent, and adult-like students I have had the pleasure of working with. I cannot wait for my future here surrounded by all these amazing people,” he says. “With all this newness, to me the students have been nothing but patient and engaging. It is thanks to the students and the school environment that I am able to try these great things. I cannot be happier to be a part of this school, to work with my colleagues, and to teach such amazing young adults,” Mr. Silva said when asked about his experience so far. Mr. Silva is hoping to leave the students new skills. “I might not be in line with most math teachers when I say that I don’t believe my job is primarily to teach math; I feel it is my job to teach problem solving, critical thinking, and creativity within the bounds of logic. I try and build skills and give opportunities to collaborate and communicate with these skills. The math is important but these students are going to solve problems nobody has thought about asking with tools that haven’t been developed for markets that are just emerging.”
Claire Hackett, middle school Journalism and Leadership teacher, is looking forward to working with high schoolers as the new ASB teacher. “I have loved doing Leadership at the middle school for the last 9 years, so when the opportunity arose to work with the ASB class at the high school, I was stoked! I love helping students create a school culture that is fun, welcoming, and positive!” she says. When asked about some differences she has observed between teaching at the two schools, Ms. Hackett responded: “It is a big shift, as high school students are obviously much different than middle school students. The high school students are incredible at taking initiative to get things done!” She is excited for the opportunity to help high school students as they move towards adulthood, the “real world”, and their futures. Her goal is to help the students at SLVHS be connected the staff, and to each other. “I hope students gain skills in empathy, resilience, goal setting and goal achievement, and working with all different kinds of people. These are skills needed in life, not just school,” she says.
Beloved middle school math teacher Rebecca Doty had an opportunity to work with the AVID students this year, and help students in their Senior year make some very big decisions about what comes next for them in life, while continuing her ninth year of teaching at the middle school. “Many of these students were in my 8th grade AVID class, and I was excited to work with them again. As it turns out, all of the students in AVID, whether they are new to me or not, are really great people that already hold a large spot in my heart.” When asked about her year so far, she says: “It has been absolutely amazing! I feel very honored to be with my group of seniors. They are kind, hard working, and honest students and I am enjoying learning with them.” Although Ms. Doty loves teaching at the middle school, she says “High school is a different time of life than middle school, especially since I’m working with seniors. I also am teaching a different subject since I teach math at the middle school. I suppose the biggest difference is how my seniors handle independence and the conversations I can have with them. We can be really real with one another.”
Brian Heery, Math 2 teacher, has taught at a number of high schools in the Bay Area. “I’ve been teaching for a few decades and have enjoyed working with students from 5th grade to graduate level students,” he says. After moving to the San Lorenzo Valley four years ago, he started to look into work opportunities and found one at SLV. When asked what drew him here, he responded with, “the strong community spirit here at SLV.” Mr. Heery’s hope is that the students in his class will leave with a better understanding of who they are and greater confidence in their abilities. “It’s been a great start to the year getting to know the students, faculty and administration here at SLV,” he says.
With all of the new additions to campus, students are left feeling excited for the on-coming school year.
Mr. Silva, Photo by Tulsi Carroll
By Tulsi Carroll