Dear Golden Bear Families
My name is Mr. Larry A. Guilford, and I am incredibly proud and honored to begin my first full year as principal. Sylvan is an outstanding school that has benefited from strong leadership and dedicated educators. I look forward to partnering with each of you to move our students from “Good to Great!”.
Sylvan Hills is a vibrant school community that at its core holds very closely the value of working together to support the growth and development of everyone. I believe that a school must be a success for every child and that can come in many different forms. The educational journey is one that is best shared together and in my view that is what will lead us to achieve more together. I developed a vision for Sylvan Hills schooling this summer and I am excited to live it out with each one of you.
My vision for Sylvan Hills is a school that lives and breathes community. A school that understands that community isn't just the students, teachers, and parents, but the greater community as well. One that is so well grounded in valuing each and every person that alumni in previous years are seen socializing with our students just because they want to. Where teachers, parents and students alike welcome friends, family and strangers with sincerity and an invested interest in others. My vision is of a school which recognizes our core values and seeks to be actively involved in the growth and development of our school.
My vision for Sylvan Hills is a staff that value the need to support the social and academic development of every single one of their students above all else. I see staff knowing the names of every single child in the school and the story which they bring with them. I see teachers who are driven to apply the best possible learning and teaching practices off the back of quality professional development. I see teachers who inspire students to achieve their full potential and find every opportunity to share the best practice with their peers. I see teachers that feel empowered to know that what they are doing in their own classrooms is a part of the bigger picture of effective schoolwide practice. I see teachers that make data-driven choices to direct their practices and know that every day is a new opportunity for them to learn in the same way their students do.
My vision for Sylvan Hills is for classrooms, staffrooms, and offices to be flexible learning spaces of collaboration. I see students, parents and staff members sharing stories that inspire each other to strive for even greater outcomes. I see parents actively working alongside teachers to achieve shared goals. I hear conversations that focus on bringing everyone together because 'many minds are better than one'. I see everyone caring enough to value the thoughts and ideas of others, all be it that they may be different to our own. I see parents informed about what is happening in their child's classroom and feeling empowered by the opportunity to share in the learning that is taking place.
I see students owning their learning and knowing that the only way for them to achieve their full potential is to get stuck in and give their very best. I see students believing that school is a success for them and that each and every day is a new opportunity to shine in so many different ways. I see students using technology to support their learning and development. I see students appreciating that the school values them as an individual and in turn provides opportunities for them to do the things they love and are talented at.
Above all else, I see Sylvan Hills Middle School as a place where we find strength in caring. I see our school being a place where smiling faces shine brightly, and the sounds of laughter fill the campus and where every day is an opportunity for everyone to achieve their full potential.
Mr. Larry A. Guilford, Principal