Valley's New Incoming Head of School - Shana Reiss de Reyes
Dear Valley School Community,
To say that I am excited to be named your next Head of School is an understatement. I am overjoyed at the idea of joining your community and thrilled at the opportunity to lead it into the next era. Valley is such a unique school and so perfectly in line with my values and educational philosophy that I can’t help but think that it was meant to be.
I have lived in Madison Valley for 15 years and have been a part of the Seattle independent school community for much longer than that; I have admired Valley for a long time. I have heard about the inspiring teachers and the tight-knit community. I knew that Valley has a strong belief in the power of play and a deep respect for childhood, however it wasn’t until I spent time on campus that I began to better understand how those values are infused in everything that happens at Valley. From the cozy classroom spaces to the playground forts built by the students themselves, it is clear that the students are at the heart of the work at Valley. I remember hearing a parent talking about how their child was upset on the weekends because they missed being at school. That is what school should be! A place where learning is so exciting and joyful and interesting that your student wants to be there on the weekends!
The work of childhood is fun as well as serious. Students at Valley are working hard while the adults are working hard to support them. I am deeply impressed with the thoughtfulness of the faculty. During my visit I saw teachers truly listening to their students, respecting their ideas and supporting them to be their best selves. Everyone, be it assistant teachers or administrators, is dedicated to creating a nurturing community where students want to learn. I look forward to experiencing more of how they put their ideas into practice.
In addition to the faculty and staff I would like to recognize Alan’s leadership and that of the search committee and the Board of Trustees. The passion of the search committee for the school and thoughtfulness throughout the process was testament to the values at Valley. It was clear that the leadership of the school recognizes what a special place Valley is and they have worked hard to ensure its sustainability. I am so fortunate to inherit such a passionate school community who is ready to partner with me to take the school on to the next steps in its journey.
I look forward to joining the Valley community officially this coming July. I know that each day over the next few months, I will drive past the school and feel my heart inching ever closer. I am very excited for our adventure together to begin.
With sincere affection,
Shana Reiss de Reyes