“Brian assumed the management of Lynhaven with style and grace and created a seamless transition to the benefit of students, staff and the parents…Brian has built trust and confidence in his abilities with all his colleagues and community.”

— Dr. Marcia Plumleigh
Superintendent Campbell Union SD

Lynhaven Elementary

1999 to 2000  

Principal – Grades K-5
740 students

Campbell Union SD
315 Third Ave.
Campbell, CA 95008

What I learned from my time at Lynhaven:

  • Site leadership as the sole administrator requires substantial time commitment in building effective relationships with all groups, families, teachers, support staff and community stakeholders. It is not just about discipline and books.
  • Senior administrators who can develop a strong and specific vision can shape a school district and achieve exceptional outcomes for families.
  • A specific human resources philosophy that starts with induction and supports the initial years of teacher growth is critical to the retention of quality educators.
  • There are times as an administrator that being firm but fair applies to teachers (as much as it does to students) when is comes to upholding expectations.

What we accomplished at Lynhaven:

  • I lead the staff through curriculum mapping process in math and science in anticipation of increased state standards and California’s new STAR testing processes.
  • Commendation from the State of California for raising learning outcomes by 12% over a single year in California’s STAR assessments for reading and math.
  • Grant writer and administrator for the Community Foundation of Silicon Valley funding to support early reading strategies through the inclusion of family reading training and materials.
  • National Blue Ribbon School – Candidate 2000.
  • Hiring and evaluation of 53 certificated and classified staff.

District Committee Positions:

  • Elementary Principal on the District Budget Advisory Committee.
  • Led the development and implementation of the Campbell USD’s Promotion by Achieving Student Standards (PASS), a process for supporting failing students as required by new California state policy. Presented Campbell USD’s PASS protocol and the League of California Middle School Conf. in the spring of 2000

Although not my first administrative position, Lynhaven Elementary was my first solo site leadership position. I must say my time with the Campbell Union School District (CUSD) were “the” formative years; years that defined who I was to become as a leader. The superintendent and associate superintendent at the time were very confident, well-informed and driven leaders. They could demonstrate measured compassion, right before firmly telling you in very clear terms what they expected. CUSD is where I learned the skill of tracking individual’s work with the right balance of micro-management and loose supervision.

As a young staff and administrator Lynhaven achieved some amazing things in our time together, particular our curricular mapping practices. This at a time when we were in the middle of adjusting to California’s new class size reduction policy, which meant new staff and new schedules. We were able to have strong in-depth conversations about math and science instruction that effectively defined how our FOSS science program would articulate with math and reading program goals. With great support from our district literacy coaches we were able to raise our student’s California STAR Assessments (grades 2-5 Math and Reading) score by 12% in 10 months using improved instructional practice, including more expository text with science lessons.

There are four things that Lynhaven brought out in my leadership skills:

  • At Lynhaven I continued my development as an effective communicator and manager of a large school while being the only administrator. Lynhaven was a school of 680 students when I joined it in 1999. This taught me a great deal about effective collaborative leadership to achieve consistent student discipline processes, meaningful teacher evaluation, while developing a strong academic program.
  • Lynhaven had 36 different languages among its families. Working effectively with families required I stretch my cultural competency skills in developing inclusive practices.
  • When working with a teacher who might not be the best fit for the school it is important use firm, consistent language. Leadership sometimes has to endure conflict to effectively change a school’s culture.
  • At Lynhaven I was able to improve my curriculum development skills when tasked with bringing vertical curriculum integration to our math and science curriculum. It was one of the most gratifying curriculum projects I have been involved with.

Lynhaven and CUSD were pivotal experiences. We were able to develop effective and sustainable instructional practices, we came together as a learning community to do a wonderful community service project on our campus; and all the while made tremendous growth on our state assessments.