Sitting in the library at Wooddale Middle School in Memphis, Sharon Gorsich beams as she says, “I love math. I geek out on it! I think math is, honestly, just beautiful.”
A west coast native, the enthusiastic new Assistant Principal was raised in San Diego and attended UCLA, where her lifelong love of math collided with a burgeoning passion for public education in the university’s Teacher Education Program.
Life at Locke
After college, Gorsich began teaching mathematics at Locke High School in Los Angeles. One year later, Locke became a Green Dot Public Schools transformation, and Gorsich chose to stay. “All I really knew about Green Dot at the time was that teachers I trusted and respected had really fought to allow Green Dot to partner with Locke,” she explains, “and that parents had really pushed for it. So, that made me want to be a part of it.”
Green Dot difference
While teaching at Locke, Gorsich found she was drawn to the new professional development opportunities made available through Green Dot. She joined the Instructional Leadership Team, became involved in the Safe and Civil Program and eventually began leading professional development sessions herself.
Nine years later, Sharon Gorsich is a spirited advocate for the Green Dot approach, and her career path with the organization has taken her from California to Tennessee through the Administrator-in-Residence program.
The intensive 12-month, multiple school site residency was designed to support educators as they transition into leadership roles. As Gorsich puts it,
“It’s like student teaching, but for administrators. I feel like I was able to hit the ground running here at Wooddale because of the training I received through the program.”
Involving community inside and out
Since starting her role as Assistant Principal at Wooddale Middle School, Gorsich has made strengthening the school’s connection to the neighborhood around it one of her chief priorities. She and the Wooddale staff dedicate a lot of time and energy to facilitating activities for the students and community events for parents and neighbors.
“The biggest thing,” says Gorsich, “is that we make ourselves available to the families, to the community and to the students. There’s everything that happens inside the classroom and everything that happens outside the classroom, and we care about both.”