From Jenn Pedersen — Upper School Principal
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Dear Woodside Upper School Families,Pedersen/Mull

Welcome to the 2020-2021 school year! It is my great pleasure to serve you as the new Upper School Principal, and I look forward to working with our staff, families, and students in grades 5-8. I am proud to continue my service to the Woodside School community, in my 9th year as a staff member here. While this upcoming year will certainly bring its share of challenges as we navigate the new educational landscape presented to us by COVID-19, I am optimistic that the year will also bring new and creative opportunities for students, families, and staff members to connect and work together as a team. I look forward to forging long-lasting and meaningful relationships with you all as we partner together to create an exceptional educational experience for your children. 

While I am new to the Upper School Principal position, I have served our community for the last 8 years as a Middle School English Language Arts teacher. I have taught many siblings of our current Upper School students, and they might remember me teaching under my maiden name, Ms. Mull. I grew up in the Bay Area and attended the University of California, Davis, where I received my B.A. in English Literature, Theory, and Criticism, as well as my M.A. in Education. After exploring various aspects of school leadership through committee and research work at Woodside School, I began an administrative leadership program at Loyola Marymount University, where I went on to receive my administrative credential and a M.A. in School Administration. Last year, I served as the 8th Grade Dean to the Class of 2020 and gained invaluable experience that prepared me for this new transition. Woodside is a community that I care deeply about and am highly invested in, and I look forward to bringing my passion, experience, and dedication to my new role. 

As both an administrator and a teacher at Woodside School, I have witnessed firsthand the extraordinary capabilities of our Upper School staff. There is truly no finer set of educators around, and I am proud to be a part of their team. Our teachers are passionate and dedicated individuals, who are skilled experts in their field. Our students are so lucky to benefit from their expertise and passion, and I know that you will be incredibly impressed with the programs they offer and the connections that they make with your children! 

This summer, our teachers, staff members, administrators, and Woodside families have worked together tirelessly to create an educational experience that will respond to students’ academic, social, and emotional needs during this unexampled time. As we enter this school year, please know that I am here to support you and your children with anything that you may need. I look forward to a year of learning alongside you, celebrating student success, and supporting all stakeholders. The 2020-2021 school year is sure to be a great adventure, and our Upper School family looks forward to welcoming your student with open arms next week!

Yours truly,

Jenn Pedersen