Six parents attended a school district-sponsored forum last night to share their thoughts on the key attributes they'd like to see in the next principal at Amador Valley High School.
The forum was held as the district begins interviewing candidates to replace principal Tom Drescher, who announced earlier this year that he will be leaving his post on June 30.
Dianne Howell, assistant superintendent of human relations, said the new principal is expected to be announced at the April 19 meeting of the Pleasanton school board, along with a new superintendent and a permanent principal for Walnut Grove Elementary School.
At Wednesday night's meeting at Amador Valley High, parents said they want a new principal who is approachable, technologically minded and financially savvy.
They listed communities that focus on developments with band, sports, drama and newspaper, among others, adding the need for a dichotomy between the "helicopter" parents and "laissez-faire" parents. They also cited the need for a juxtaposition of caring for high-performing students, students who don't plan to attend college and everyone in between.
"All students," said Amador Valley culinary teacher Stacey Ristow. "Not just, 'Here are the AP students. Here are the students going to a four-year college. Here are the ones in career and technical education.'"
She noted that special education students need different support than AP students, adding, "They need to be supported just as much."
To do all that, parents said, the next principal needs to be kind while demanding respect. He or she needs to be visible, available and a good listener.
Then there's an added challenge of fundraising. With state funding to public schools remaining tight, the trickle-down of those funds means schools have to fundraise for items that were previously covered by the district, such as some sports and band expenses.
All told, parents said, they're looking for "the perfect person," but they said they mostly want someone who will work well with the team that's already been put in place at Amador Valley.
Parents who were not able to attend the forum are encouraged to email firstname.lastname@example.org with their input.