COVINA, CA – Four new administrators will bring their talent and experience to Covina-Valley Unified School District this year, helping to further the District’s mission to provide educational excellence for its students.
Rebecca Handzel is the new principal at Fairvalley High School (Fairvalley HS), Covina-Valley Learning Options Academy (C-VLOA), and the Adult Transition Program (ATP), Ann Anderson has taken the helm as principal at Grovecenter Elementary, Kazuko Tuttle is the new principal at Cypress Elementary, and Elena Camarillo has stepped into the role of Assistant Principal at both Mesa and Cypress elementary schools.
Handzel is a 26-year educator with experience in both the classroom and administration. She began her career as a Spanish teacher, has served as a principal at both the high school and middle school levels, and most recently was the Director of Accountability and Continuous Improvement for a school district. Handzel said she is thrilled to bring her passion for education and leadership to Fairvalley HS, C-VLOA, and ATP.
“I have been so impressed by the commitment our teachers and staff have displayed for our students and the community,” Handzel said. “There is such an inspiring feeling of camaraderie and family in this District.”
Anderson comes to Covina-Valley Unified after leading a virtual independent learning program as its principal, while also serving as an elementary school assistant principal. She is looking forward to reconnecting staff, families, and the community with Grovecenter after the past few years of pandemic-related changes. Grovecenter has many upcoming engagement events planned to encourage families to come together and interact with administrators, teachers, and staff. Anderson said she is also looking forward to connecting directly with Grovecenter students.
“One of my favorite things about working with elementary students is sharing my love of reading with them,” Anderson said. “I can’t wait to get into classrooms and read some of my favorite books with them.”
Tuttle, who served as the assistant principal of Mesa Elementary School in 2021 and interim principal of Cypress Elementary School in early 2022, said that one of her goals as principal is to ensure students and their families have the academic and emotional support and guidance they need as they enter into the new school year. Tuttle is also working to enhance the current systems that are in place to ensure students can thrive in the classroom.
“I absolutely feed off the ‘light bulb’ moment when a student can understand a concept and go further by teaching it to a fellow peer,” Tuttle said. “I strive to always put students and teachers at the top of my list to guide my everyday decisions.”
Camarillo is bilingual in Spanish and English and is now entering her 21st year in education, having been a teacher and instructional coach prior to her current position. Camarillo said she is looking forward to building lasting connections with as many students as she can, allowing her to provide the best service and leadership possible in her role as assistant principal.
“It’s really great to be part of a community of educators who go above and beyond every day to provide students and families with the best elementary experience,” Camarillo said.
Camarillo said one of the things that attracted her to working in Covina-Valley Unified School District was joining a team that cares for and supports students’ learning as well as their well-being.
“I am so pleased to welcome these outstanding leaders to our strong administrative team here in Covina-Valley Unified,” Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Eminhizer said. “They bring expertise and experience as well as the dedication to supporting the needs of our students and their families that is a hallmark of our District.”
CVUSD_Management1: Mesa and Cypress elementary school Assistant Principal Elena Camarillo greets students as they arrive at school.
CVUSD_ Management2: Cypress Elementary School Principal Kazuko Tuttle reads to students during class.
CVUSD_ Management3: Grovecenter Elementary School Principal Ann Anderson works on a variety of different projects with students in class.
CVUSD_ Management4: Fairvalley High School, Adult Transition Program and Covina-Valley Learning Options Academy Principal Rebecca Handzel greets students between classes.