Monday, August 17, 2015

SBISD Names New Spring Shadows Elementary School Principal

Rachel Martinez has been named as principal at Spring Shadows Elementary School after serving there as co-leader and principal- in residence last year. She has 14 years in education including nine years in Spring Branch ISD as a teacher and district staff developer.

For the past two years, she was an assistant principal at Treasure Forest Elementary. She has also led Port Houston Elementary in Houston ISD as principal. In SBISD, she’s served as both a bilingual Teacher on Special Assignment (TOSA) and a Response to Intervention TOSA.

In 2001, Principal Martinez earned her bachelor of science degree in education through Texas A&M University Corpus Christi. She later earned a master’s degree in educational administration in 2009 through Texas A&M University in College Station. She’s currently pursuing her doctoral degree, also through the flagship Texas A&M campus.
She began her education career in 2002 at Ridgecrest Elementary School as a second-grade bilingual teacher. “As a product of Spring Branch ISD, it was an honor to return to Spring Branch after college. I love serving the community I grew up in,” Principal Martinez said.

As Spring Shadows principal, her life has come full circle. In 1991, her parents moved to Houston from the Rio Grande Valley. “We moved into what is now called Miami Garden Apartments, which fed into Spring Shadows Elementary. I’m so honored to serve this community and to continue the great work of leaders before me,” she said.

Principal Martinez is a strong supporter of the district’s T-2-4 goal, which calls for SBISD students to be equipped with the academic and life skills to successfully complete some form of higher education after graduation – technical certification, military training, or a two-year or four-year college degree.

As both an assistant principal and summer school director, she’s worked with teachers and helped to use data to inform and improve teacher instruction.

“As a principal and leader, I want to ensure that every single action we take has a direct influence on helping students understand that they have a gift inside. As educators, we all need to get to know our students to the level of harnessing that gift, those strengths, to achieve great things. We have a strong responsibility to ensure that our students not only have a solid foundation, but exceed everyone’s expectations,” she said.

In her TOSA roles, she worked with teachers from every district elementary and middle school. “Our teachers work very hard across the board. I had a unique opportunity to coach teachers by facilitating academic conversations around the needs of their students. I do believe that it all starts with getting to know your students,” Principal Martinez said.

She describes her career in education as a family affair. “My husband of 17 years, Awais Mahmood, is a district language specialist for Klein ISD. I also share my home with four furry, feline friends, and in my spare time I like to craft, read books and travel to state parks,” Principal Martinez said.

As principal, she replaces Jerona Williams, who serves as the district Interim Executive Director of Pre-Kindergarten through 12th Administrative Services.


Post a Comment

Do you have feedback? Tell us.