Vargas Elementary welcomes new principal

008Kathryn Armstrong has been named as Principal of Vargas School. Her first day at Vargas was November 8. Kathryn replaces Annette Grasty who resigned in September to accept a promotion in Los Gatos-Saratoga High School District.

Kathryn joined Sunnyvale School District as a teacher at Lakewood School in 2003. She also served as an instruction coach at Lakewood from 2011 until 2014. For the past three years, she has served as Assistant Principal of Ellis Elementary School where she has had a very positive influence on school culture, instructional practice, and student learning.

Kathryn holds a degree in Psychology from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and she received her teaching credential from Santa Clara University. Her M. A. degree in Educational Leadership and Administrative Services Credential were earned at San José State University.

Congratulations to Kathryn on her promotion!

“Her solid work ethic, positive instructional leadership, and wonderful interpersonal skills stood out throughout the selection process and promise to make her an outstanding principal for the students, families, and staff of Vargas School,” said Deputy Superintendent of Human Resources Michael Gallagher. “Special thanks is due to Ceci Mah for her dedication and hard work as interim principal at Vargas.”

Mrs. Armstrong said she is very excited and honored to begin her journey as Principal of Vargas Elementary School and that in the short time of being at the school site, she can already see that the Vargas school community cares deeply about students, their progress, and the learning environment that surrounds them.

“Students come to school with an eagerness to learn and much of this can be attributed to the Student Success through Science program and the many engaging learning opportunities and experiences the program and staff provide,” Armstrong said. “In my first year at Vargas, my goal is to learn about and nurture the great work that has taken place and moved the school in such a positive direction. By doing this and working collaboratively with the staff, I hope to discover new ways to continue to move the school forward in the best interest of serving our students and make learning fun.”

Former Principal Annette Grasty had been an educator in Sunnyvale for more than 20 years and affected the lives of countless children within the community. Even her two children are alumni of Lakewood Elementary school.

She worked at several schools in the Sunnyvale School District. During her time as the principal of Fairwood Elementary School and later Lakewood, she brought both schools up to California Distinguished Schools status. Grasty was the principal of Vargas Elementary School for the last four years.

Some of the educational achievements that she had a hand in implementing in 2015 as principal of Vargas were the dedicated science lab with a certificated science coach to support teachers and students, curriculum for academically high-achieving students and working to create a positive relationship with staff and parents.

Article by Deputy Superintendent Michael Gallagher and District Communications Coordinator Alia Wilson.

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