Letter from the Principal

Letter from the Principal (2021-2022)

June 4, 2021

Dear Visitacion Valley Middle School Community,

I am deeply honored and excited to have the opportunity to serve as Principal of Visitacion Valley Middle School. Having served the past two years as Assistant Principal, VVMS is a community that I love and care for.  I am privileged to be able to continue to work with our dedicated staff, AMAZING students, and supportive parents. The middle school years are critical times of development for students and families, and I look forward to working with all of you to ensure our school helps students feel a sense of belonging and joy, as well as prepares them for high school, college, and beyond. 

I began my career in education in Richmond, CA. where I had the privilege to serve as a 7th and 8th grade English Language Arts and English Language Development (ELD) teacher at a public middle school. Before becoming the Assistant Principal at VVMS,  I served as an Assistant Principal at two different elementary schools in Richmond, CA. and San Pablo, CA. Some of the work I am most proud of as a teacher and leader is building relationships with all community members to create a supportive and positive environment, as well as creating systems and using data to make informed decisions regarding instructional practices that lead to increased achievement for students. 

As a leader, I hold three core values close to me: connection, growth, and appreciation. Connection is first and foremost because this work is all about relationships - connecting with stakeholders, earning trust, and sharing in the decision making. I value growth because I am constantly reviewing data, asking how we can be better for our students. Even in failure, there is growth, if you are using a critical lens to understand and improve. Finally, this work is some of the most challenging, but rewarding work there is. Showing appreciation for things big and small, matters.

On a personal note, I was born and raised in the midwest, but I have called San Francisco home for the last 13 years. My partner and I recently moved from San Francisco to the East Bay, and we are preparing to welcome our first child this summer! In my spare time, I enjoy camping and traveling. I also enjoy cooking (and eating) good food with family and friends. 

I look forward to our partnership this upcoming school year and collaborating with all of you to support our brilliant students. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me for anything (harrisc@sfusd.edu).

In community, 

Courtney Harris