Dear Annie Webb Blanton Staff, Parents, and Community:
Welcome to another spectacular year at Blanton!
It is an honor to be able to serve our community of students, families, and educators as the interim principal. On the first day of school as an assistant principal at Blanton two years ago, I was struck by the warm, bustling environment at morning arrival. The sidewalks brimming with families lingering for a chance to connect, it was a lively scene of reunion between students, their friends, their families, and staff members. To this day, I am amazed by the strength of the relationships we have built into the foundation of our school. It is through leveraging these relationships that I believe we can continue cultivating a school that simultaneously supports and challenges all students, nurtures the whole child, catalyzes academic and personal growth, and inspires a lifetime of learning,
From kindergarten to high school graduation, I spent thirteen years as a student in Austin ISD. The first six were spent at the school where my mother was a teacher, who unsuccessfully tried to steer me away from the unique challenges of a career in education. I went to college at Tufts University outside Boston and spent semesters abroad attending la Universidad de Chile in Santiago and la Universidad de Alcalá de Henares outside Madrid. The challenge of my coursework and living alongside my Chilean and Spanish peers ignited a passion for bilingualism and ultimately guided my path into the field of bilingual education.
Returning to Austin, I taught for ten years as a fourth and fifth grade teacher at Perez Elementary School in southeast Austin. As part of Austin ISD’s dual language pilot, I experienced firsthand the limits that our old, late-exit bilingual program placed on my students and the strengths a dual language model unlocked through its embrace of bilingualism, biliteracy, and biculturalism. My decade in the classroom shaped my core professional commitment that public education should resolutely serve all students and be a force for equity to realize our collective promise. Though this time serves as a touchstone for my work as an administrator, I only experienced one side of the school-family partnership. As my son starts his journey as a student in Pre-K 3 this year at Blanton, I am certain that I am in for another education of my own.
Our Blanton community has accomplished great things and built collective success. Ensuring that our school is a source of joy and success for students, staff, and families is a passion we all share. I am thrilled to be carrying on this work with our team here at Blanton, and I look forward to conversations about what we are eager to do next!
Blanton Elementary School