Carden West School names Mark Neal as its new principal

Castro Valley school administrator has 14 years' experience in education posts

Mark E. Neal has been named principal of Carden West School, a private, nonprofit toddler-middle school in Pleasanton.

Neal received his bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Florida International University and a Master's degree in Educational Leadership from UC Berkeley's Principal's Leadership Institute. While teaching fourth grade, he was an administrator in training in Union City and San Francisco from 1996-2003. Most recently, he was summer school principal for the Castro Valley Unified School District and associate principal at Creekside Middle School in Castro Valley from 2003 until his selection as principal at Carden West.

Neal also designed the program training teachers to integrate technology into their language arts curricula as a technology instructor for the Alameda County Office of Education in 1999. Since 2007, he has served the Association of California School Administrators as charter president for Castro Valley, as well as the region's representative on the organization's Equity, Achievement and Diversity for Success Committee.

"Upon researching Carden West, I was first very impressed with the curriculum throughout all grades and, particularly, with the exceptionally strong foundation the preschool provides to pre-kindergarteners," Neal said. "As we know, a strong correlation exists between how well prepared children are when they come to kindergarten and how successful they become throughout their school years. Carden West can say with conviction that its students leave preschool "kindergarten ready".

Carden West, located at 4576 Willow Rd. in Pleasanton's Hacienda Business Park, is a private nonprofit, nonsectarian school that offers preschool-8th grade education as well as extended care and summer camps for all age groups.

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Like this comment
Posted by Curious
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 11, 2010 at 8:42 am

Sounds like a coup for Carden West. DOes anyohe know offhand how CW compares with Quarry Lane School?

Like this comment
Posted by Enrique
a resident of Walnut Hills
on Aug 11, 2010 at 1:31 pm

This is just my own opinion...

When we compared the two schools, it seemed that Quarry Lane was very academically focused, which was fine for parents that wanted that for their children. Carden West however seemed more focused on the whole child and not strictly on academics. Not to say Carden West doesn't focus on academics, but it doesn't advertise that fact the way Quarry Lane seems to do.

Like this comment
Posted by Carolyn Burke
a resident of another community
on Aug 16, 2010 at 4:27 pm

Mark Neal is a wonderful administrator. He is well liked by parents and students. He will be a terrific addition to your school.

Like this comment
Posted by Fred
a resident of Danville
on Sep 10, 2010 at 1:39 pm

Carden West has a big heart, great staff and happy teachers. Can't say the same about Quarry Lane.

Like this comment
Posted by vk
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 14, 2010 at 3:55 pm

Quarry Lane is pretty good very caring and highly qualified teachers.
My child is very happy and I see a lot of happy and smiling faces every day when I go to pick him in the afternoon. The transition day care to this school has been very easy thanks to the teachers.

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