Principal: Tamera Sullivan-Daley
Assistant Principal: Julio Fernandez
About the Principal, Tamera Sullivan-Daley
My teaching and leadership philosophy is that (1) Everyone is capable and distinguished (2) The teaching and learning role is reciprocal (3) I embrace equitable practices in all facets of learning, while collectively and individually working against unfairness and bias.
All students are brilliant and capable learners. Mirriam-Webster defines brilliance as very bright, glittery; striking, distinctive; distinguished by unusual mental keenness or alertness. Students, no matter their cognitive profile, language ability, socioeconomic status, race(s), gender identification, sexual choice, or emotional functioning are brilliant. Everyone is distinguished. Every student has distinctive, remarkable outcomes. As teachers, it is incumbent upon us to strip away the ideology and preconceived notions about what it means to be “brilliant” or “smart” and consider that a student’s brilliance or distinguished abilities is their unique learning profile. To measure success we must know what our students’ patterns of strengths and areas of refinement are so we can design curricula that remediates the differences all the while building on student strength. When we consider all students brilliant, our lens is less filtered. We see students for who they can be without limitations placed on them. As such, we allow ourselves, as teachers, to be learners in collaboration with students.
As a craftsperson in the field of teaching/coaching, I have worked with students with varying abilities and skills; every single student contributes to the learning atmosphere of the classroom. One of the best ways to ensure that all students have a voice within the classroom and the curriculum is to build it from their interests and strengths. Using hands-on experiences and considering access points for all, creates an atmosphere in which everyone is engaged and accountable. To further this practice, true teaching comes from collaboration. Collaboration is not limited to staff that work within the building, but community members, professionals, and people with similar interests and pursuits. Collaboration begins with the adults and must include students. Students and teachers are reciprocal learners and teachers in this paradigm. In this, we build lessons with each other because of each other and our pursuit for a just and anti bias learning environment. So, when we consider all students brilliant, our lens is less filtered so we see students for who they can be without limitations. As such, we allow ourselves, as teachers, to be learners in collaboration with our students.
As a veteran teacher with over 21 years of experience, 18 of which has been at Fort River, in both private and public schools, I bring an awareness of building strong relationships with students and staff as well as parents and community members. I am thrilled to continue to be part of the Fort River community serving the students, families, and community in a different capacity. I am looking forward to a new year filled with hope, learning opportunities, and many laughs along the way.