A Message from Dr. Kristy Andre, Interim Principal
Dear Arroyo Families,
Thank you so much for such a warm welcome. It has been such a pleasure getting to know many of you and your kids. I had so many kids come up to me and shake my hand to introduce themselves (so polite and respectful - which shows what amazing job you are doing as parents). A little background on me, I have been in education for 13 years. I have taught upper grades, middle school, and high school. I taught at Tustin Ranch Elementary, Lambert Elementary, and I helped to open Tustin Connect (online school). I taught in South Africa for two years at a school for orphan and vulnerable children. I returned from that amazing experience and became a Digital Learning Coach, Connect Coach, and MTSS TOSA. I have a passion for Social Emotional Learning and I have my doctorate in Educational Leadership. My goal is always to make everyone feel loved, cared for, seen, and safe. Please feel free to say hi to me when you're on campus! Thank you for all you do.
Dr. Kristy Andre
Letter from Principal Sheyka
Dear Arroyo Families,
On behalf of the entire Arroyo Elementary staff, I would like to extend an enthusiastic welcome to all of our new and returning families. I am excited to begin my second year with you as your school principal. As a staff, we are looking forward to partnering with you to ensure we are doing all that we can in support of your student’s healthy development. This year, we will continue to focus on social-emotional wellness, with an emphasis on cultivating a calm, safe school campus by implementing new school-wide systems and procedures.
As you may know, last June I experienced an unexpected medical scare, which pulled me away from the last week of school. I was fortunate to have had the time to heal and reboot this summer. In my absence, the staff and community jumped in to successfully wrap up the year. Their selfless actions, compassion and collective leadership deeply inspired me and affirmed what I had already known to be true. Arroyo is, without a doubt, the strongest, most generous and outstanding school in all of Tustin Unified, and you, our Arroyo parents, are a huge reason for this.
Last year I was fortunate to experience first-hand, the passion and commitment of our generous parent community and the unwavering dedication of our professional staff who worked tirelessly to ensure student success. I am confident that 2018-19 will be an equally exceptional year for our 635 Mustangs, as we further strengthen our academic programs and continue our quest for innovative and inspiring ways to promote creativity, collaboration, critical thinking and communication in the hearts and minds of our students.
Each new school year brings change, and this year is no exception. Last June Arroyo said goodbye to three awesome educators – Mrs. Hatfield, Mrs. Ridlon and Mrs. Siemsen. These three teachers have decided to take a leave in order to be able to engage with their kids as full-time moms. While their smiles and energy will be missed, we are happy for them and wish them the very best. We also said good-bye to our PE teacher, Mrs. Hutchins. With that, other teachers have shuffled grade levels and new team members have been hired. Mrs. Castillo will teach 3rd grade this year, and Miss Aragon has moved up to 5th grade, joined by our new 5th grade teacher, Mr. Chad Reed. Mrs. Oza will be partnering with Mrs. Yraceburn in 1st grade, and we welcomed Mrs. Stephanie Sainato to our 3rd grade team. We are very fortunate to have partnered up with four other TUSD elementary schools in hiring Dr. Stephen Kelly, as our new PE teacher. Coach Kelly is extremely knowledgeable and passionate about working with kids, and he is pumped to be providing our Mustangs with a strong, engaging Fit Friday PE program this school year. Finally, we are excited to welcome back our Social-emotional Learning (SEL) Coach, Mrs. Owen, who joined our team late last fall, along with Miss Doris, her SEL intern.
We will continue to provide rigorous, standards-based learning opportunities which will prepare our students for their future educational pathways and beyond. We are excited to offer students excellent educational programs and practices including: a Fit Friday PE program in ALL grades, reading intervention sessions, Cognitively Guided Instructional (CGI) strategies in mathematics, Readers and Writers Workshop, Social Studies, Science, Robotics, music, art, social-emotional wellness, character development and much more. Moreover, we are committed to fostering curiosity in our evolving, 21st century, Makers Space as students experience the Engineer and Design Process throughout the year. In support of our efforts, please be sure to carefully review and discuss all school procedures and policies, as well as student conduct information with your child. Visit our Arroyo Elementary PTA website, to learn more, & find exciting ways to get involved in the school.
I look forward to launching another successful year at Arroyo and spending each day with your children. I am honored to work with Melissa Weiss, our returning PTA President, as well as Amy Kassardjian, our Co-PTA President, our entire PTA Board and all of our members again this year! Thank you, in advance, for all you will do in support of your child’s successful 2018-19 school year. Once again, welcome back!