Enrollments soar at 2 Westside schools
Landwehr feels Coronado in good place as she becomes its principal
New Coronado Principal Marcia Landwehr believes this is a good time to be granted leadership of the Westside's flagship high school.
Going into 2013-14, enrollment is on the rise, she's “thrilled” with her staff and pleased with improved Coronado student scores on last spring's annual Transitional Colorado Assessment Program (TCAP) testing, the results of which came out this week.
A nine-year Coronado assistant principal, she takes over from David Engstrom, who was transferred by District 11 to the new Wasson alternative campus starting this fall.
Taking her former position as Coronado assistant principal is Jared Welch, who had been the athletic director at the old Wasson (the high school by that name that the district closed after last year). Continuing as administrators are Assistant Principal Darin Smith, Dean of Students Sergio De Lourenco and Athletic Director Dave Howard.
Landwehr doesn't plan any major changes as the year begins Aug. 19. “We're going to be very thoughtful about what we're doing, making small adjustments and keeping our eyes on student performance,” she said.
The most obvious need for adjustment is to the increase in students. Fueled for the most part by larger school boundaries east of I-25 - bringing in freshmen from part of Palmer High's former attendance area - preliminary numbers show the enrollment up by about 150 from the 1,350 at the end of last year. And, the 480-member freshman class is “the largest in nine years,” Landwehr said.
Other factors in the number upswing, she believes, is families choosing to attend Coronado because of its unique attributes. “Coronado is really a community,” she said. “We help each other and take a lot of pride in being Westsiders.”
Preferring to wait until the enrollment is more certain, she's only hired one new teacher so far. She expects either to work with the district on hiring instructors as needed and/or to have existing staff teach an additional class per day.
In any case, the school has the capacity. Landwehr said Coronado was able to handle 1,700 students in 2004, her first year.
The new principal thanked District 11 Superintendent Nick Gledich for his support - although she is not sure yet if her posting will be for one year or more. Before being named principal, she had submitted for retirement, so if that does not change this would be her last year. She is ready to unretire - “that option is open” - but plans to leave the decision to Gledich, she said.
Westside Pioneer article