Principal Susan G. Levy

Susan LevyI am thrilled to be a part of the Pershing community and have spent many years as a resident of San Carlos. I have made education my life's work and am blessed to have had many diverse experiences as a teacher and administrator. I started my career in New York City, where I grew up, and graduated from The City College of New York. At the time, the Open Classroom concept was very new and I was privileged to have had Lilian Weber, one of the early pioneers of the Open Classroom, as a mentor. I graduated with a degree in Early Childhood Education and felt compelled to work with underserved communities and spent some time working in the Head Start program.

I then had an opportunity to work in a grant funded program called The Parent Child Workshop under Dr. Carolyn Goodman out of Bronx State Hospital. I served as the teacher for the children of women who had been hospitalized as a result of post partum depression. This was an out-patient program. I worked closely with the psychologist and together we helped our families learn to read to their children, help them with homework, understand the needs of children, and enjoy playful interactions.

After moving to San Diego, I spent 10 years working for San Diego Unified School District as a teacher, Lead Teacher, and Acting Center Supervisor in the Child Development Program. I loved the work and the children and was able to see them grow and mature over the years. It was bittersweet when my family had an opportunity to move to Lancaster, Pennsylvania where I taught 6th grade for the next 10 years and received my Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction through Penn State University.

My colleagues and principals always encouraged me to become an adminstrator but I loved teaching and hated the thought of leaving the classroom. Begrudgingly I left my role as a teacher and stepped into the world of leadership. My hope was to make a difference for even more students. My first position as an administrator was at Pequea Valley Intermediate School; a 6-8 school of 500 students in a rural part of Lancaster County. During my tenure as Principal, I was able to lead our school through the the process of achieving notoriety as a Learning Focused School and meeting our high expectations in standards-based instruction. I was also the only principal in the county to direct and produce the middle school musical 4 years in a row!

Again, my life took a new turn and I returned to San Diego in 2003 and was hired immediately as the principal of Jean Farb Middle School in Tierrasanta. Through our collective leadership, Farb became a National AVID Demonstration School and achieved notoriety within our district as well as nationally and internationally in the AVID community. After 10 years at Farb (this seems to be a pattern with me!) I was hired as the principal at Pershing Middle School. Returning to my own neighborhood was a joy. Knowing that my daughter, nieces and nephews had attended Pershing made my connection to this school an even greater pleasure. Currently, my daughter's close friends are also graduates of Pershing and now have their own children attending elementary school in the neighborhood.

On a personal level, I am blessed to have 3 wonderful children, a daughter and two sons, and 5 grandchildren; 2 of whom are twins and are currently attending Benchley Weinberger Elementary School right here in San Carlos.

As I have said many times, I am truly fortunate to work with such amazing teachers and staff members, engaged and involved parents and community members, and the most awesome students you could ever find in San Diego! They are smart, creative, caring and responsible and I look forward to many years of my devotion to Pershing Middle School. This is truly The Best School in the Universe!

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