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South Valley Journal

Meet your new principal

Aug 29, 2018 02:54PM ● By Jana Klopsch

Principal Todd Quarenberg is recognized as an outstanding principal with the Huntsman Award for Excellence. (Jordan School District)

By Jet Burnham | [email protected]

Todd Quarnberg, newly appointed principal at Herriman High School, loves being a principal. And he’s good at it. He received a 2018 Huntsman Award for Excellence in Education this spring. 

Quarnberg said he’s grateful for receiving recognition for doing what he loves.   

“If I won the Huntsman because I go to events and I love the kids, that’s great,” he said. “It’s not a sacrifice for me. It’s not something I have to do above and beyond the norm. It’s why I’m in the business.” 

As an administrator for the last 23 years, Quarnberg said a principal's job changes every year as they balance responsibilities ranging from testing scores and graduation rates to addressing students’ social and emotional health.

The community is holding its breath to see a new principal will make a difference in a school struggling with social and emotional issues. Students and staff at Copper Hills loved working with Quarnberg and tout that he is an award-winning administrator. But he admits he can’t solve all the problems at the school. 

“I am not the solution to the problem,” he said. “I’m not the solution, but I do love kids. And if that’s the one thing I could accomplish is to let every kid know that we’re a team, that we love each other, I will have done something great.” 

Quarnberg’s main focus this year will be creating a caring and united culture at HHS. He promises to bring his heart, soul and love to the task.

“No one loves their kids and community more than me,” he said. “Maybe just as much but not more.” 

Quarnberg is a visible principal. He supports school programs and enjoys talking with kids and parents. 

“I’m not afraid to talk to parents,” he said. “I expect parents to talk to me, and not just in my office — when they see me at a ballgame or an extracurricular event or a choir concert. What you’ll see out of me is I will be visible. I will be there and I want to hear from them.” 

He said what he asks of the students is service and kindness.

“And if they learn a little math, science and English along the way? Bonus!” he said. 

Ann Pessetto is the new principal at Silver Crest Elementary. 

Pessetto, who has been an educator for 29 years, has great plans in store for Silver Crest Elementary. 

“I feel the most important thing is to make sure that it’s a safe and happy learning environment for kids,” she said. 

Pessetto will continue the programs already in place at the school such as Principal’s Pride and Noble Knight, which recognize students for their efforts. She also plans to introduce additional programs that encourage positive behaviors and promote anti-bullying messages. 

Students will be instructed in social, emotional, learning and mindfulness techniques this year. Pessetto believes these programs will help students be well rounded and healthy. 

Pessetto will continue to promote the school motto: Listen, Learn, Lead. She is looking forward to getting to know the students and parents. 

“I encourage them to come introduce themselves to me,” she said. She believes in keeping lines of communication open. 

Amanda Edwards is the new principal at Bastian Elementary.

Edwards loves the outdoors and enjoys camping, boating and paddle-boarding as well as reading. She is excited to meet the teachers, students and families of Bastian Elementary. This will be her sixth year as an administrator where she feels she is able to make a difference in the lives of students and teachers.

“It’s fun being part of the problem-solving process and meeting students’ needs,” she said. “I will be looking for how we can best structure our day and our classrooms and our school to help students be successful.” 

Edwards enjoys the challenge of working to meet the diverse needs of families. 

“Everyone comes with a different skill set and different challenges,” she said. “I try to find the best solutions that meet everyone’s needs.” 

Across Jordan District this year, schools will be focusing on social and emotional learning. Working with her teachers, Edwards will be developing strategies to recognize and support students who need help learning these skills.

Bastian will also continue their character education program with an emphasis on kindness.