Raul Guerrero appreciates strong traditions and progressive staff of school
Analy High School’s new principal Raul Guerrero takes his new position to heart. With an administrative style that is personal and earnest, it is apparent that Guerrero is dedicated to making the school as top notch as he can. Now on his ninth year at Analy, Guerrero said he is proud to be the leader of a school with such rich customs.
“I left for 12 years and when I saw an opening here, I couldn’t wait to come back,” he said.
Guerrero’s wife Kristina is from Fort Bragg and 20 years ago, they moved back to Sonoma County from San Diego with their two sons to be closer to her family. Hired as a teacher at Analy in 1995, he taught social sciences for a year. After finishing his administrator credentials, Guerrero took a job with the Santa Rosa city schools as an assistant/vice principal and worked with their district for 12 years.
When he saw that there was an opening for an administrator at Analy, he jumped at the chance to work with the school again. Guererro said his year of teaching at Analy was a wonderful experience and that he has always enjoyed the community of Analy.
“There is really strong community support at Analy with the teachers, administrators and with the students,” he said. “There are strong traditions here that I like and the staff is really progressive, working hard to improve student opportunities.”
Serving as a vice-principal at Analy for the last eight years, Guerrero said he sees Analy as the heart of Sebastopol. With students that have great grand parents who attended the school, there is a heritage that permeates throughout the campus community.
“I take that heritage to heart and hope to continue those traditions and maintain the support needed to make Analy the best school it can be,” Guerrero said.
Over the last few years, Guerrero joined forces with his predecessor Chris Heller, as well as vice-principal Lindsey Apkarian to not only support old traditions at Analy, but to start new ones as well.
Superintendent of West Sonoma County Union High School District Steve Kellner said the great thing about Guerrero is that he not only has a great deal of institutional knowledge but he also has a strong history at the school.
“It’s a wonderful way to start your principalship,” Kellner said. “He has that built in expertise and those relationships with the staff and with students. As a first year principal, he’s going to have a running start.”
Guerrero is known to be out and about on campus daily. He describes his style as an administrator as personal and said that because he does feel responsible for what goes on at Analy — he wants to be as accessible as possible.
“I’m people-oriented,” he said. “I like to keep those relationships relevant, with staff, parents, students and the community. I like open communication and transparency. I think it’s important.”-
Kellner said as a school administrator, it would be really easy to spend the entire day in the office with so much to do. But Guerrero, he said, makes a point of being visible and students recognize that.
“He’s not the guy who hides in his office, he’s the guy who’s out on campus and talking to students,” Kellner said. “And that’s really a great way to show them you care, because you are out in their world opposed to back in yours.”
What is also important to Guerrero as an educator and administrator is making sure what the students are learning is germane for college and real life. As for what’s new for the school year, Guerrero said with the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) accrediting coming up next year, Analy administrators are doing some self-exploration.
“As well as instruction, we are using the process to be proactive and guide our discussions around school culture, community and policies and how to improve in those areas moving forward,” Guerrero said
With every year, Guerrero hopes that the community knows the administrators at Analy do contemplate on how to keep the school as advantageous for students as possible. For the upcoming year, the next generation of science standards are being put into practice as well as career technical preparation to create pathways for students with more project-based learning. With new facilities for music and the new field for sports, Guerrero said he can’t wait for Analy’s first home game on the new turf.
“It’s our first home game of the year on Aug. 26 on our new field,” Guerrero said with a smile. “It’s gonna be a big one.”
The students and staff have had the chance to know Guerrero over the years and Kellner said he looks forward to the community having the opportunity to connect with him as well. As the principal, part of Guerrero’s job is engaging with the public.
“I’m actually really excited that the community is going to get to know him more now too,” Kellner said