I started my career in education as a student teacher, working with Gertz Ressler’s founding class of students, while earning my Masters Degree in Teaching. Over 4 years, I taught US History, AP US Government, Women’s Studies, Yearbook Advisory, and coached our competitive Cheer Squad.
When Alliance ESAT High School (now Leichtman Levine) opened, I took an opportunity to become their founding History Department Chair, teaching US & AP US History, AP US Gov & Politics, and running a Debate Club. As I learned to facilitate and embrace student-centered learning, over 100 of my AP students passed their AP exams. By placing my students in the driver’s seat to lead class from the Do Now, through daily discussions and debates, to the Exit Slip and Daily Debrief, they were able to create an intellectually rich environment and far exceed national AP pass rates. As an Instructional Coach, I supported new and developing teachers at ESAT. Upon finishing my Masters in School Administration at LMU, I became an Assistant Principal. Expanding access for all students to enroll in Advanced Placement courses is a big goal of mine and over a period of 3 years, enrollment in AP courses doubled to over 500 voluntary course enrollments in one school year.
After an intense interview process, Administrator residency, and Board vote, I became the Principal of Gertz Ressler in December 2016. I am thrilled to be back where I started but more experienced and bringing with me the perspective of a parent. I am eager to share my passion for RIGOROUS, COLLEGE-READY INSTRUCTION and cultivate a JOYFUL place of learning for ALL STUDENTS, FAMILIES, TEACHERS and STAFF.
One of the things that brought me to Alliance and has kept me grounded here for a decade is our mission and belief that ALL of our students are capable of getting into and succeeding in COLLEGE. The successes of our Alumni fill my heart with joy and I LOVE when they come back to visit!
On a personal note, I am a Los Angeles native, first-generation college student, proud graduate of 4 colleges and universities in LA (Go Bruins, Trojans, and Lions!), thrill-seeking adrenaline-junkie (ask me what crazy thing I’ve done lately), and a mother of three (twin daughters and a son). My husband also works for the Alliance as an AP teacher and Instructional Coach. We love to travel and spend time playing with our kids, who crack us up daily.
My door is open should you ever want my support, have a suggestion for how we can improve our program, or just want to say hello.
My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Please don’t hesitate to reach out.
- Principal Tsai