Jul 28, 2014

Meet the Interim Principal at LCE

While Principal Christine Castillo takes her maternity leave, Susan Kobilarcsik comfortably fills her shoes.

Meet the Interim Principal at LCE

Growing up in Minnesota, Susan Kobilarcsik aspired to have a career in education.

As a teacher in St. Paul, she dreamed of working in a warmer climate.

A friend encouraged her to come to California and apply for a teaching position in the La Canada Unified School District.

Her first job was a La Canada Elementary (LCE) as a 5th grade Language Arts teacher. The following year, she taught 6th grade Math at LCE. She continued teaching Math for seven more years at LCE.

To further her career, Susan went back to school in the evenings and weekends to get her Administrative credentials. The LCUSD superintendent at the time, Jim Stratton offered Susan the summer school principal position.

Stratton was so pleased with her performance, that he asked Susan to be a principal at Foothill School in 2005-2006 (the school no longer exists). Next, she became an intervention teacher at Palm Crest.

When the Garvey School District in Rosemead offered Susan an Assistant Principal position, she left LCUSD and stayed in Rosemead for five years.

Wanting a different career path, Susan persued a career as a professional coach. She helped adults make a successful transition into a new career.

When Wendy Sinnette learned that Christine Castillo, the newly hired (August 1, 2012) principal at LCE needed to take maternity leave from Dec. 2012 to March 2013, she immediately thought of Susan and called her to see if she was interested in the position.

"I've known Wendy for years and have kept in touch with her since I left the district," shared Susan as I interviewed her in her new office. "I also kept in touch with many of the teachers at LCE including Mrs. Rappley and Mrs. Bornhurst."

Since she worked at LCE for nine years, Susan feels right at home. "I have such fond memories of LCE," said Susan. "The staff and parents are so supportive and welcoming."

When I spelled out her last name, I asked her what do the students call her? I can't imagine a kindergarten student pronouncing the 12 letters in her last name correctly. "They can call my Ms. K," said Susan.

Even though she will only be a principal for LCE for the next three months, most of the parents I talked to were very pleased with Wendy Sinnette's decision.

Susan has an open door policy, so pop your head in and give her a warm welcome back to LCE.

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