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Our Community Focus

Principal Shuffle at Christ the King, Sequoia and Valhalla

Oct 01, 2018 06:38AM ● By Jennifer Neys

Pleasant Hill Principals Come and Go

By Jaki Jones


Two Pleasant Hill schools welcome new principals while one bids farewell


Christ the King School

Christ the King School welcomes new principal, Joe Silveira, who came from Carondelet High School in Concord. Mr. Silveira has extensive experience in all levels of education, ranging from classroom teacher, mathematics department chair, elementary school principal and, most recently, as high school vice principal of Carondelet High School. Mr. Silveira believes in inspiring children to reach their highest academic potential and personal best as they strive to make the world a better place. 


Sequoia Elementary

Sequoia Elementary School’s new principal, Patricia Kawahara, took over the position on September 4. She has been in education for 20 years, from classroom teacher to administrator, both in the Walnut Creek School District and the Mt. Diablo School District. “I have a great love for serving children and families and am enjoying getting to know the Sequoia community.  I am excited about the opportunity to continue the great work happening at Sequoia and to dive into the international baccalaureate application process with the school community,” she said. Kawahara replaces Glendaly Gascot, who moved over to Oak Grove Middle School in Concord.


Valhalla Elementary

Marji Calbeck, principal at Valhalla Elementary, has taken on a new title and position with the Mt. Diablo School District as Director of Elementary Support.


This newly created position will provide support to all 30 of the elementary principals in the school district. She will be working under the general direction of the assistant superintendent of student achievement and school support. Calbeck has over 16 years of experience and expertise as a school administrator and will be responsible for directing the district’s elementary instructional program and overseeing a system of school support, including principal coaching, staff supervision, and professional development, as well as providing leadership in the ongoing development and improvement of curriculum and instruction in the district.


Over the last few years, she has had the opportunity to mentor several new principals while meeting her responsibilities as the school principal at Valhalla. “It has been a very rewarding experience but also very challenging to adequately provide the needed time with the constraints of being a site principal myself. When this new position was announced, it seemed to be tailor made for me,” she said. With the influx of many new principals in the school district, Calbeck will now be able to support and mentor them full-time. “It is bittersweet to leave the Valhalla community at the start of my 17th year; they are like family to me. I will miss seeing the children every day and hearing about all the adventures of the staff and parents. I would like to extend my appreciation to the entire Pleasant Hill community for their support and friendship through the past 16 years. I look forward to this next chapter and will continue to be involved with Pleasant Hill and all the schools in my new role.” In the coming weeks there will be interviews conducted for a new principal and a candidate will be selected for District Board approval.