Hillview Students, in case you wanted to know more about our new Associate Principal, Ms. von der Linden, three of our cabinet members decided to interview her. This is the transcript of their interview, enjoy!
Claire Auslander, Emily Olson, and Devin Leslie are three of your ASB cabinet members.
Hillview Middle School’s New Associate Principal
As classes resume, many Hawks have mixed emotions. Will I like my new teachers? Will this year be better than the last? What’s different about this year?
The 2016-2017 school year marked Hillview’s beloved Associate Principal, Mary Martin, last time as a hawk. This year, we’re excited to welcome the former Vice Principal of Encinal Elementary School, Joan von der Linden, as our new Associate Principal. As students, we decided we wanted our community to get to know Ms. von der Linden better. We conducted an interview to learn more.
What would you say your job description is as Associate Principal?
The Associate Principal position allows me to serve in a variety of buckets. Examples include supporting teachers and students in the academic realm, helping to facilitate use and management of our technology tools, partnering with Mr. Haug and the teaching staff in determine short and long term goals for student learning, and my most favorite, working closely with students in supporting social emotional wellness through middle school.
What is one thing you want everybody to know about you?
Prior to being an assistant and now associate principal, I taught 5th grade at both Encinal and Oak Knoll.
What are you most excited about at Hillview?
I am thrilled to learn so many new things and meet so many new people! Although I have been an assistant principal for 9 years, the switch to the middle school has brought so many new opportunities for growth. I am truly humbled.
What will change at Hillview under your tenure that the Community will want to hear about?
Every day I grow more inspired by the programs, staff and students at Hillview. I think what will change depends on what this collaborative team of staff, students and families determine to be the best course to move the school in this continued path of excellence. I look forward to playing on this team!
What will change at Hillview under your tenure that Hillview students will want to hear about?
I think we will have to see...
What piece of your background do you see most helping form your vision for Hillview?
I was both a teacher and a teacher mentor in the Menlo Park City School District. Both of these roles taught me
- The importance of the relationship between a teacher and student
- The high level of commitment and passion our teachers have for our students and their learning.
These are necessary foundations for all schools.
What program or idea have you initiated at Encinal that you want to replicate at Hillview?
We started the Advisory Program for 4th and 5th graders 8 years ago in an effort to provide an opportunity of enrichment, and at the same time, promoting "giving back" to the school community. For example, one advisory group learned yoga and then went on to teach yoga in the kindergarten classes. Other examples are publishing a school newspaper, horticulture, bird house construction, and cooking. I see how programs like this can connect students to others with similar interest, all in the theme of helping others. I would love to be involved in either continuing or starting a similar focus at Hillview.
All in all, we are looking forward to Joan von der Linden’s tenure at Hillview! We can’t wait to see what you’ll do this year, Hawks!