Leading the Way

Our skilled and seasoned staff are dedicated to teaching and helping every child, every day. Our staff goal is to work as a cohesive team to create an environment where students can truly thrive both intellectually and creatively. We foster an environment of collaboration with parents, and work to create a place where children can develop their lifelong love for learning.

Emilio Garza

Emilio Garza

Principal

Rey Munda

Rey Munda

Magnet Coordinator/ Title I Designee/ EL Designee / Testing Coordinator / Title IX Complaint Co-Manager / Homeless Education Program & Migrant Workers Liaison / Foster Youth Advocate

Kathryn Sutherland

Kathryn Sutherland

Kindergarten Teacher

“You are made of stars and a superstar you are!! :)”

Ms. Sutherland has been a teacher for 7 years, and we've been lucky to have her at Elysian for 5 years so far. Her favorite thing about Elysian Heights is the people. From the faculty to the staff, kids, and parents—they all bring her so much joy. She is a free-flowing, outgoing teacher that can bring any student out of their shell. If she could have any animal as a classroom pet, she would choose a big, funny dog to cuddle with the kids during read-alouds and play with them during recess!

Amy Treviño

Amy Treviño

Kindergarten Teacher

“I love you, I believe in you, and I have high expectations for you!”

Ms. Treviño's favorite thing about teaching is the "Ah ha!" moments of learning and seeing how proud the kids can be when they can begin reading great stories. With over 3 years at Elysian, she loves the community of the school from the staff to the kids and parents. She is known to bring the dance party wherever she goes because she is the queen of celebrating success! If she were a crayon color, she would be purple and yellow swirled together as they are meaningful to her, and represent energy, life, and happiness!

Courtney Diedrich

Courtney Diedrich

Kindergarten Teacher

“You are in control! You can do great things!”

Ms. Diedrich has started her teaching career at Elysian Elementary and is thrilled about how welcoming and positive everyone has been. She takes a student-centered approach to her teaching and makes sure to meet each student where they are. If she could be a crayon color, she would be yellow because she is a positive and cheerful person—just like the sun!

Susana Villamarin

Susana Villamarin

1st Grade Teacher

Ms. Villamarin has been a teacher for over 25 years, with 22 of those years being at Elysian Heights! Her favorite thing about teaching at our school is being able to impact the community in which she lives. She also enjoys the beautiful garden and trees on our school grounds. She's always open-minded to the needs of her students and loves using art and music to inspire them. If she were a crayon color, she would be blue because it reminds her of the beautiful sky and ocean.

Jaquelyn Bonilla

Jaquelyn Bonilla

1st Grade Teacher

“You are loved and always supported to be your true self inside our space.”

Ms. Bonilla has started her career at Elysian Heights and loves the connected community of families and staff. She's known for her patience and has a goal of always creating a teaching environment that is fun and filled with laughter. She wants all of the students to know she will be their #1 supporter, and that they can be free to be themselves. If she could have any classroom pet, it would be a baby pig so the students can have a silly, fun pet to run around with! 

msbonillasclass.weebly.com

Julia Richardson

Julia Richardson

1st Grade Teacher

“"My greatest goal as a teacher is to honor the deep curiosity and profound capacity of each child."”

Sheryl Murakoshi Gallo

Sheryl Murakoshi Gallo

2nd Grade Teacher

“I will listen to you, believe in you, and help you become the best you can be.”

Ms. Gallo has been a teacher for over 24 years, with 22 of those years at Elysian Heights. She loves teaching the many generations of students & families. The community is close, supportive, and wonderful. The greatest reward for her is when some of her old students come back to visit and let her know the fantastic things they've done so far with their lives and careers. She loves teaching and understands that each child is unique and special. She's known for being calm, open-minded, creative, and project-based. If she could choose any animal as a classroom pet, she would choose a giraffe! We'd just have to ask for a skylight so he can have some room. 

Rachel Burt

Rachel Burt

2nd Grade Teacher

“"Everything happens for a reason."”

Luz Angelica Gomez

Luz Angelica Gomez

2nd Grade Teacher

“We make mistakes so we can learn. Every day, we can be a better version of ourselves.”

Ms. Gomez started her career with Elysian Heights and have been with us for over 3 years. She loves how welcoming the staff and community is. Her goal for her classroom is to be student-led. She sees the classroom as a place full of learners, including the teacher! She loves creating a sense of wonder in students and utilizes that for project-based learning. She meditates with her students every morning to set a calm and balanced tone for the day. If she were a crayon color, she would be cerulean blue. She remembers when she learned how to pronounce that word in the first grade, and it's stuck with her ever since as a bright and bold color. 

Hannah Klein

Hannah Klein

3rd Grade Teacher

“Watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. - Roald Dahl”

Ms. Klein is honored to be starting her teaching career at Elysian Heights for the 2020-2021 school year. As a teacher, she is all about building strong relationships, asking big questions, and cultivating a joyful learning environment. She values creative and critical thinking, collaboration, arts integration, and believes strongly in the capacity of every child to do amazing things. Ms. Klein loves teaching because she loves learning, and she is so grateful to learn new things from her students all the time! If she were a crayon she would be purple because she tried out being Harold's purple crayon on Halloween one year and it just felt right.

Cherry Miller

Cherry Miller

3rd Grade Teacher

“Be kind! Try hard! Aim for the stars!”

Ms. Miller has been a teacher for over 20 years, with 18 years of that time at Elysian Heights. She has gotten to know everyone so well—from the staff to the students and the community. She loves how it feels like home at the school. She is a very structured teacher but loves to pair planning with creative freedom. It's so fun to see the kids go above and beyond with projects, making the classroom so full of energy and color. If she could choose any pet for her class, it would be a giant panda to cuddle with during independent reading time! 

Fatima Rios

Fatima Rios

Resource Specialist

“Always keep trying and practicing! Especially when things seem daunting and challenging.”

Ms. Rios loves the diversity and flexibility of Elysian Heights. Her teaching style is a balance of old school expectations, paired with restorative justice practices. She enjoys collaborating with her students and loves both teaching them and learning from them. She's been a teacher for 12 years, and at Elysian for 7 of those years. If she were a crayon color, she would be purple because eggplant is her favorite veggie! 

Vanity Amano

Vanity Amano

4th Grade Teacher

“The world around us is so big and needs big questions and creative answers!”

Ms. Amano just finished up her first year teaching at Elysian Heights and has had so much fun learning from the staff. She has discovered the students to be so friendly, accepting, and always willing to learn from each other. She enjoys a lot of discussion-driven lessons in her teaching so the kids can speak their minds. She wants to foster an ability for them to express their thoughts and opinions on topics they are passionate about. If she could choose any classroom pet, it would be an ocelot. This wild and unique cat would have fun hanging out with our city kids! 

Steve Szabo

Steve Szabo

4th Grade Teacher

“Find out what matters to you and spend your life pursuing it!”

Mr. Szabo has been a teacher for 28 years, with 20 of his years being at Elysian Heights. He has so much fun with the kids and loves all of their interesting antidotes. His teaching style has always been very flexible. He allows students to express themselves without fear of judgment. Students feel free to learn in their own way within his classroom. If he could have any animal as a classroom pet, he would bring his parrot…he could help with classroom management as he has a degree in Group Dynamics. 

Jason Garcia

Jason Garcia

5th Grade Teacher

“Fail if you must, win if you can, but under no circumstances do you ever give up!”

Mr. Garcia has spent the last 7 years of his 19 year teaching career with Elysian Heights. He loves the vibe of this school and attributes it to the good nature of the kids and the staff. He is honest, fair, patient, and motivational with his students. He relates well to the kids by sharing stories to help them understand things they are challenged within their lives. If he could be a crayon color, he would choose olive green because it reminds him of being outside—his favorite place to be! 

Rebecca Maurer

Rebecca Maurer

Art Teacher

“Let yourself be creative in all areas of your life—not just art.”

Rebecca has been an art teacher for 3 years, and last year was her first at Elysian Heights. She loves the opportunity to make art every day with the amazing students here. She loves reflecting with the students and helping guide them through their creative ideas. If she could have a classroom pet, it would be an elephant. He could use his trunk to get things from high places and his memory to help her remember all of the things she has to do each day! 

Allison Tuthill

Allison Tuthill

Music Teacher

“You never get a second chance to make a great first impression. Always be your best self!”

Ms. Tuthill has been a music teacher for 9 years, and last year was her first at Elysian Heights. She loves how creative the students are. They always come to music class with new and great ideas. She tries to incorporate all students interests and values into the music room. She wants her classroom to be a space for students to express themselves. If she could have any animal in her class, it would be a songbird of course! 

Curriculum
Inquiry Our classrooms are intentionally designed to promote inquiry-based learning...
Arts & Culture
  As we believe that access to the arts is crucial to student-learning, Elysian Heights Arts Magnet launched a school-wide visual arts program in the fall of 2016. Our students access the arts both in and out of the classroom...