Reston Now sent questionnaires to area elementary school principals so readers could get to know them and hear what is in store for the 2016-17 school year. We will be running them occasionally as they are sent back over the next weeks.
Today’s chat is with Lake Anne Elementary’s Jill Stewart, who recently took over leadership of the school.
Reston Now: Tell us about yourself and how you came to be at your school?
Jill Stewart: My name is Jill Stewart, and I am the proud principal at Lake Anne. I am excited to begin my first full year of school with the Lake Anne family.
I became principal at Lake Anne last December after serving in FCPS as an ESY Principal, an assistant principal, a Reading Specialist, and an Education Program Specialist for the U.S. Department of Education. I began my teaching career in Fairfax County as a multiage teacher at Hunters Woods Elementary School for the Arts and Sciences in 1996.
RN: What’s in store for your school this year? Any big changes?
JS: Lake Anne will be celebrating 50 years of educational excellence this year! I am honored to work alongside our talented, dedicated, and caring staff to continue the vision of Mrs. Beatrice Ward, the first principal of Lake Anne Elementary.
Mrs. Ward believed that all children should receive a quality education and hoped, “the community would continue to grow to have a wide range of backgrounds and abilities in it.” Fifty years later, the Lake Anne Elementary community is still dedicated to fulfilling those goals.
We will be celebrating Lake Anne’s 50th throughout the school year with our families and community members, honoring those who set the standard for educational excellence while that torch into the future.
RN: What are you most proud of at your school?
JS: Lake Anne Elementary School is a wonderfully diverse learning community where we recognize, like Maya Angelou, that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength. We are a family of committed staff and parents who link together for the success of our students. We are Spanish Immersion school with an Eco School lens, which allows us to support the sustainability of our community.
RN: What do you want newcomers to your school to know?
JS: Lake Anne Elementary School is a school where our staff strives to provide our students with an exceptional educational experience. We are proud of our history, family feel, and inviting school environment.
RN: Are there any particular challenges your school is facing? How will your tackle them?
JS: Any challenges that present themselves are opportunities for all of us to stretch and grow together.
Photos: Top, Principal Jill Stewart with Lake Anne students; Bottom, Lake Anne students at Spring Dolphin Dash/Courtesy Jill Stewart