By Contributing Writer Riley Kim (’24)
Former Spanish teacher María De Jesús is J-D High School’s newest assistant principal. She has worked at J-D for many years as a teacher and has made her way into a well-deserved administrative position. The RamPage sat down with her to ask a few questions about her first year as the assistant principal.
When asked about how she has enjoyed her first year as assistant principal, De Jesús stated, “I love the job and I was a little worried that I wouldn’t have enough engagement with the students.” But she noted that she had frequent visitors, gesturing towards a jar of candy that “keeps a lot of students coming in to visit.” She has also gotten to know students that had never taken Spanish before.
Though she loves the new job, she does still miss some things about teaching. One of the things she misses is her old department, although it is right around the corner. She also misses hearing students’ stories about where they utilized the Spanish they learned. Though, she notes, some of her old students still come by and say hello.
When asked about how different her job is now and how it was when she was a teacher, De Jesús said, “The obvious is there’s no grading. There is planning but the planning is different and I’m not as deeply involved with the students on a daily basis.” One of the main things that she misses and that is different is her connection with students.
One of the main challenges she faced when switching from teacher to administrator was having to deliver messages that people don’t want to hear, be it to students or to faculty. She described it as being uncomfortable as she already knows almost everyone. She has gotten more comfortable with the process through the year. She described the challenge: “I guess in a nutshell, the challenge is going from a teacher to a leader in the same building.”
When asked about whether or not there was something specific that made her want to switch from teaching to administration, she said, “No, I’ve always kind of just been in school, took the classes, went through the program, and found I could do a lot more in this role.”
De Jesús has adapted to her new job as the assistant principal of J-D. From teacher to administrator, she promises to do what is best for the school. Though she misses having as many interactions with students, she is ready for the new school year armed with the knowledge she has gathered.