Tracy Cockerill, of Durham, is the new principal of Indian Valley Elementary School and Greenville Junior Senior High School.
Cockerill has 28 years of experience in education and for the past 22 years has worked in Durham Unified School District in all levels of education.
For 15 years, she taught at the intermediate level teaching math, science and history.
Most recently, she’s spent the past seven years teaching at the elementary school level as well as DUSD’s home and hospital instructional program working with high school and special education students. She also taught the district’s Cyber High independent study program.
In prior years, Cockerill taught in Antioch and Los Angeles school districts.
Cockerill is “very excited to be a part of Greenville” and feels that her experience in Durham helps her realize the challenges of small school situations. She sees technology as one of the areas where she can facilitate positive change in the schools.
“I believe my experience will be a benefit to teachers as they integrate this more in their instruction and to students as they learn to use technology as a regular part of their education. The biggest challenge to this can be deciding what is the most appropriate use of technology and how to balance between “the way we have always taught” and “the way students in the 21st century learn,” said Cockerill.
It is her hope that students graduate from Greenville schools completely prepared for either careers or college.
“I know that our students are growing up in a completely different reality than just 10 years ago. I am also a proponent of career and technical education. For educators, I believe we must change some of the ways we have been doing things to really meet the needs and interests of the students,” she said. “That being said, there are also many experiences, such as our Outdoor Education program, that are unique to Plumas County that students need to experience without the distractions that technology can sometimes bring. We want our students to be well-rounded citizens as they enter the workforce.”
Cockerill, who was relocating to Plumas County last week, indicated she’s always enjoyed traveling up to Plumas County and driving through the Feather River Canyon. She’s an avid outdoors fan and hopes that the people she meets will suggest more hidden gems in the county to explore.
Cockerill sees herself as an educator and as a life-long learner — someone never quite satisfied with present education and always reaching for more. She wants to bring some of that enthusiasm for learning to both staff and students.
“I believe as educators we need to models ourselves as learners to our students. I believe that all students can learn and will promote them believing that in themselves,” Cockerill said.
Though she understands the importance of traditions in a small town, she also looks to “enhance what is already great about Greenville.” Cockerill looks to the interconnection of education with the community, recognizing that education impacts the lives of students, and the communities where they reside.