Meet the principal: Allison Carmichael to make jump to Silver Valley Elementary

Name: Allison Carmichael

School: Currently, Gateway Polytechnic Academy but in 2019-20 Silver Valley Elementary

Town/Neighborhood: Mesa

Allison Carmichael

What I’m excited about and why: This neighborhood, in the northern area of the Queen Creek Unified School District, is just exploding with excitement as young families flock to the area. Due to the rapid growth of the area, there are new things planned for businesses as well such as restaurants and grocery stores. It is a neat time to be here as one can literally watch the area evolve.

What I like most about being an educator here: The community is very active in our schools. Students are very lucky to have volunteers in classrooms and teachers have the luxury of partnering with parents in the educational process.

Favorite community cause and why: I believe that supporting our local community is important. Over the last seven years, I have worked at schools that have participated in Mesa’s United Food Bank canned food drive. I am passionate about finding a way to ensure fewer families suffer from hunger.

My family: I have a wonderful husband who teaches economics in Mesa. He also is an entrepreneur in starting up a local Arizona hat company last year. You can often find him at various art fairs around the valley on weekends. We stay busy with our three active, and talkative, children: Carter (9), Mae (7) and Josie (4).

What I like most about what I do: As a principal, I enjoy seeing the success of teachers. I see myself as their coach helping them to find victories in and out of the classroom.

Previous occupations and why I left: I have never been anything but a public educator in Arizona. My heart has always been in teaching.

My interests and hobbies: When I have the time, I love to be in nature. I enjoy having no phone connection. The solitude helps me to focus on my children and living in the present moment.

People who inspired me (and how): I have so many people in my life I am lucky to have been inspired by including my grandmother and mother who were both teachers. My grandfather taught me the importance of work ethics by the example he set as a Midwestern dairy farmer, a job that calls for you to work seven days a week.

My guiding philosophy: Be kind. As Maya Angelou said, “people will forget what you have done and what you have said but they will never forget how you make them feel.”

My advice to today’s youth: Everyone struggles in life as life is hard and struggle is normal. When things get hard, admit to yourself that it is hard and keep going. Never quit. You are much stronger than you think you are.

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