Principal's Welcome

  • August, 2022

    Dear East Avenue Middle School Families,

    I am so proud and grateful to be entering my third year as the principal of East Avenue Middle School. My work with Dolphin staff, students, and families has been among the most rewarding of my career. My highest goal and responsibility continues to be ensuring that East Avenue is a great place for your kids to work, learn, and thrive. I hope you are as proud as I am of what your kids are accomplishing at East Avenue. I see only growth and greater accomplishments in our future. 

    Over the course of my 23 years in education, I have served as a teacher at both the middle and high school level and also have served as an assistant principal at both levels.  I am honored to have been awarded as Warren W. Eukel teacher of the year in 2011 and as an ACSA co-administrator of the year in 2018. My desire to learn everything possible about school leadership inspired me to earn my Master’s Degree in Educational Administration at Brandman University. I have also deepened my experience in many other ways, serving multiple times as a member of WASC accreditation teams, helping other California schools review and improve their programs and effectiveness. In the past two years, I am proud that East Avenue received a California Department of Education Pivotal Practice award for our work during the COVID pandemic and a PBIS silver award for our work in guiding students towards better behavior and social and emotional health using positive reinforcement.  

    If there has been a single common factor among all of the successful schools I have worked in or observed, it has been that families, students, and staff were connected to their school and that the school served as an extension of its community. If the professionals at the school site are the only voices deciding what we do, we will not be a true reflection of what our community wants, needs, or has to offer. I want to hear from you and I want you to hear from me about the great things going on at East Avenue. 

    I also understand that middle school students face some of the toughest issues of identity and belonging of any age group. Both of my own children went through rough patches in middle school. The teachers and staff who cared for them during these times-- engaging them academically, giving them a place to eat lunch when friends were scarce, or simply noticing them with a kind word or compliment -- provided invaluable gifts to my family. It is my intention that East Avenue Middle School provide that level of care for your children, too.  

    I, and the excellent staff I serve with, are eager to continue working hard for our kids.   The sky (or maybe 'the sea'?) is the limit for us Dolphins! 

    Jesse Hansen