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The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

Eagles welcome Principal Mizani

By Kaylee Chan | Editor-in-Chief

Bren Belmonte | Tongva Times
NEW LEADERSHIP Principal Negar Mizani hopes to bridge the equity gap at
Gabrielino while also creating new connections for students, staff and parents.

   At the start of the 2022-2023 school year, Gabrielino High School welcomed its new principal, Negar Mizani, to the Eagle’s Nest. Mizani is the sixth principal of Gabrielino, replacing former principal David Rynkiewicz who resigned in June.

   This is Mizani’s first year serving as a principal but she  has many goals she seeks to accomplish, including promoting inclusion and increasing student access to high level courses and A-G requirements.

   “I think that as high performing as we are – and we are a high performing school – we should be very proud of our accomplishments,” Mizani said. “But I also think that there is an equity gap that we need to close.”

   As a new member of the Gabrielino community, Mizani is also looking forward to working on and gaining closer connections with staff and students alike. Actions she is taking to foster those relationships involve making videos in which she can talk directly to the student body, such as those shown during Embedded Time.

   Mizani, a fan of the arts, is also looking forward to  seeing the student-led plays and artwork created under Gabrielino’s Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) program.

   Previously, Mizani was an assistant principal at Alliance William and Carol Ouchi High School in Los Angeles for four years, as well as an assistant principal at East High School in Denver, the city where she spent most of her educational career.

   Before working in school administration, Mizani followed her early love of stories and poetry into the field of teaching. She started as an English teacher and later took on the roles of department chair and instructional coach.

 Born in Iran, Mizani’s family came to the United States when she was 14. She did not know how to read or write in English when she arrived.

   “I was also undocumented, and those experiences were really impactful on who I am as a person,” Mizani said.

   Mizani, who has worked in the educational field for 15 years, enjoys many aspects of the job, such as the intellectual stimulation that comes with working in a learning environment. She also has a passion for working with young people, viewing their openness to new ideas as refreshing.

“[Students] force you to grow and progress as society grows and progresses. And I think that’s a beautiful thing… it has an influence on my personal life,” Mizani stated. 

   However, while being a principal is an exciting new role, Mizani admits it comes with its own brand of loneliness.

   “When I left the classroom, the one thing that I missed the most was the camaraderie that is so readily available to teachers… so it can be tough,” Mizani said.

   The leadership position can also involve making difficult decisions on staffing and curriculum. However, Mizani believes that if these decisions are made with reason and integrity, people will come to respect them.

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Eagles welcome Principal Mizani