What a great start of the year we have had here at Cambria Grammar School (CGS).  Today is the 13th day of school, and we have 205 energized and hard-working students from transitional kindergarten (TK) through grade 5 for the 2022-23 school year.

     CGS has a lot of significant changes and new initiatives this year, as well as the continuation of many of our effective programs.  Notable changes to staffing include Heather Rosenblum joining us as a 4th grade teacher, Erica Lovegren joining us as a new kindergarten teacher, and Christy Heitmiller (a 4th grade long-term substitute teacher last year) is now teaching 3rd grade.  Many teachers moved to different grades.  Maya Lord (she is bilingual) now is teaching TK, Rich Mendoza (last year’s physical education teacher) now is teaching kindergarten, and Kim Gray (who taught kindergarten last year) is now teaching 1st grade.  Ginna Mueller has returned to CGS to teach physical education and Megan Ender has returned and is now an English Language Development and Reading Intervention teacher.  Lauren Conklin is now our school librarian.  We are still looking to hire a yard duty and a bilingual instructional aide.

     One of the dynamic new additions to our school is Champions, a vibrant after school program. Champions has started with an enrollment of almost 60 students.  We are planning on expanding the program in the next few weeks as we hire more staff.  We are excited to be collaborating with Champions to offer needed after school care for our community.

     Academically, we have been diving into our state test data from last spring.  The data show that we made some substantial gains last year toward reducing the learning interruptions that occurred during the pandemic.  Our state test scores are actually slightly above where they were pre-Covid.  We will be continuing our whole staff training on social and emotional needs, as well as Thinking Maps and the writing program called “Write from the Beginning”.  

     Another CGS site initiative is more authentic family involvement at school.  Our Parent Teacher Association (PTA) President Christie Cosme has been such a positive and successful influence. The first PTA meeting of the year had great parent attendance and involvement.  We already are having many parent volunteers at school.  Information about parent volunteer opportunities will be emphasized during the Back to School Night class presentations on Thursday evening.  Some of the many field trips to be taken this year include each grade level getting a chance to see a live performance at the Cal Poly Performing Arts Center, and parents will have the opportunity to chaperone these experiences. 

     Thank you to the entire Cambria community.  Many families have said that the start of the year was so smooth and that their children are so happy about school this year.  The CGS staff is working with true dedication to provide the children of Cambria and San Simeon a very enriching and joyful experience.  We look forward to working with the entire community this year.

Cambria Grammar School Principal Jill Southern with Sea Otter School Mascot