Reflection on my Onward Leaders Resident Principal Year

My resident year started at Saint Joseph School in Hawthorne with Kevin Donohue. During my time at Saint Joseph I learned the necessary skills to become a school leader.   Kevin’s leadership and support empowered me  to become an inspirational leader.   I know that even when my Resident year is over, he will continue to be my mentor.  

Our time at Ramona as a Cohort is one for the books!  From the first week of onboarding, we all shared a special bond that was rooted on one vision: become the leader we were called to be.  Alejandra, Martha, Alexandra, Adriana, and Francisco will be on my  speed dial and I know that when they pick up the phone, they will be on the other end ready to listen.  Our director, Meg Samaniego, saw something in all of us.  Her enthusiasm to share her knowledge with us and provide experiences to put into practice theory has empowered us all.  Danielle Forillo has not only kept us organized ,but made sure we had our favorite treats and snacks available.  She made us feel special.  

The reason I start off with mentioning  all of these special people is because of our experiences, interactions, and  relationships I am able to know myself as a leader.  I am a leader who collaborates with others, listens with my heart, and leads by example. During this transition to remote learning, having Onward Leaders Cohorts 1-3 as a support system has helped reduce my anxiety during this difficult time. From our zoom meetings, our shared resources and WhatsApp chat we know we are not alone in this. 

On March 9th Francisco and I left our sites to Co-Interim Principal at Saint Columbkille.  We were getting to know the school community when two weeks later distance learning happened.  I am extremely grateful that I was not alone during this transition. Becoming a leader during this time has been difficult, but nothing that I cannot handle because I know that I am not alone. 

God has been by our side since March 16th when distance learning started.  Our traditional way of learning had taken a 180-degree turn.  The school community has demonstrated dedication and commitment to distance learning.  This has made the transition a lot easier.

 I think that having a support system is important, but it is more important to be humble and ask for help.  Realizing that you are not alone in this and asking for help is a sign of strength. When I think of strength, I see the tree outside my house. It stands tall no matter the years or weather.  Its roots are deep into the  ground making sure that it stands tall.  I can compare leadership to this tree.  We stand tall but never forget our roots.  We need our roots, our support system, our community, to stand tall.   We are thankful for each member of our community who has made distance learning a priority, making sure that our mission to educate the child  is not forgotten.  I think one of many favorite cohort moments is when Meg would say   come up with an analogy!   Here are some for you Cohort 4!   A successful leader is to  collaboration as roots are to a tree.  A successful leader is to communication  as chips are to salsa.  A successful leader is to support system as family is to Onward Leaders.