The Flower Hill Primary School community has been taking delight in the children studying in the building’s classrooms since September 1954. It’s been an uninterrupted tradition ever since, even during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Everyone makes the best of any situation and they manage to stay positive.
“The start of the 2021/22 school year has been fabulous at Flower Hill,” Principal Lucia Laguarda said. “We have welcomed back 276 Flower Hill Foxes from their summer vacation and they are ready to learn and have fun. Students are getting into their routines and enjoying their classrooms as well as their special area classes, including physical education, art, library and makerspace and music.
Ms. Laguarda has been principal of Flower Hill Primary School since December 1, 2017. She obtained a BA in sociology with a minor in Spanish at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in May 1992. She also studied as an undergraduate at Universidad de Sevilla in Spain and went on to earn a Master of Arts in Education with a multicultural emphasis at California State University-Dominguez Hills in May 1996.
“We have also had one of our most well attended and fantastic block parties,” Ms. Laguarda said. “Some of our teachers helped out by participating as DJs and students had a ball dancing and playing. It was a great opportunity for new families and more experienced families to reconnect and enjoy each other’s company.”
Ms. Laguarda began her career as a bilingual classroom teacher for grades 3-5 at Clyde Woodworth Elementary School in Inglewood, California, working there from 1992-1996 before becoming a teacher support coordinator with Teach for America in Los Angeles. She supervised, evaluated and provided in-service mentoring to over 200 TFA teachers in the LA area from 1996-1998.
A bilingual and multicultural teaching methods instructor at California State University-Dominguez Hills in 1997/98, Ms. Laguarda went on to serve as an English language special projects coordinator at Eucalyptus Elementary School in Hawthorne, California from 1998-2000. She was assistant principal of William Green Elementary School from 2000-2002 and principal of Billy Mitchell Elementary School from 2002-2005 and 2006-2010, both in Lawndale, California.
“Flower Hill students continue to show off what they know about the Flower Hill Four,” Ms. Laguarda said. “The Flower Hill Four features: Be Responsible, Be Respectful, Be Safe and Be Kind.”
Ms. Laguarda talks all the time to Flower Hill students about “choosing kind” and being altogether nice others in both tone and action.
“By the time our Flower Hill foxes leave our school they know that when given a choice between being right or being kind, we always choose kind,” Ms. Laguard said.