Mountain View Voice

News - April 20, 2012

Huff principal leaving for Menlo Park

by Nick Veronin

Huff Elementary School is preparing to bid farewell to Principal Sharon Burns.

Her new boss will be a familiar face. Burns will take over as principal of Encinal School, provided the Menlo Park City School District's board of trustees approves, Superintendent Maurice Ghysels announced April 16.

In an email sent to Huff families, Burns wrote that she had accepted the new job.

Ghysels, the former Mountain View Whisman School District superintendent, who now heads the Menlo Park district, said he was "thrilled" to announce his recommendation of Burns for the job.

Ghysels, who was superintendent during Burns' tenure as a special assignment teacher and her first two years as principal, noted her accomplishments in the position.

"During her four years as principal at Huff, Sharon has overseen the training and certification of all teachers in Gifted and Talented Education (GATE), while at the same time achieving a 30-point API increase for Latino students (and an 11-point overall increase for the school, taking Huff to a 942 API)," Ghysels wrote.

While Ghysels expressed elation, Craig Goldman, the current superintendent of Mountain View Whisman, shared mixed emotions.

"Sharon has been an outstanding member of the Mountain View Whisman community for the last 11 years," Goldman said. "Although we are disappointed to see her go, we support her decision to pursue new opportunities."

"I consider myself lucky that I have been able to spend so many years in the district and at Huff," Burns wrote in her email. "As a teacher, then principal, I have had the opportunity to work with amazing staff, students and families.

Burns holds a bachelor's degree in education and environmental science and a master's degree in education.

Goldman said his district has already posted a classified advertisement for the position on edjoin.org, a leading California public education job board.

The job will be listed until May 3, Goldman said. The district will likely interview internal and outside candidates for the position; teachers, parents and administrators will all be involved in choosing a handful of applicants before the administration makes a final recommendation to the board of trustees, who have the final say.

"If all goes well," Goldman said, the administration will make a recommendation by May 17.

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