Welcome to the 2019-2020 school year at Olinda Elementary School! My name is Preetom Bhattacharya and I am honored to serve as your new principal. I look forward to meeting each member of our learning community, including our staff, teachers, parents, and our wonderful students! Since this is my first Principal’s Message, I’d like to take this opportunity to briefly introduce myself and give you an idea of the person and educator that is joining the Olinda family.
My story actually begins in the far-away city of Kolkata; this is the place where my parents grew up and fell in love before emigrating from India to the United States. My father received an opportunity to conduct post-doctoral research in biochemistry at the University of Notre Dame, so he and my and mom moved from the tropical climate of Bengal to South Bend, Indiana. My mother was a teacher in India but was ready for a lifelong adventure alongside her new husband. Eventually, I showed up and our family settled in Walnut, the near-by town just up the 57 Freeway from Brea. As my father continued to pursue his research, my mom earned her teaching credential and restarted her career as an instructor in the Pomona Unified School District. My parents still live in the home I grew up in and both my sister and I are alumni of Walnut High School.
After graduating from the University of Southern California, I blended my parents’ careers and started as a high school science and mathematics instructor in Los Angeles. I also continued my education by completing a Master of Education Degree from Alliant International University as well as a Doctorate of Education Degree from California State University, Fullerton. Although I enjoyed my several years in the classroom, I moved into a role supporting teachers as a district instructional coach in El Monte, serving as a literacy and language development specialist for students in grades 7 through 11. After a few years, I was hired as an administrator in Huntington Beach, where I served as an Assistant Principal at Isaac L. Sowers Middle School and as an Educational Services Coordinator at the District Office.
Somewhere along the way, I met the love of my life and have been fortunate to have been partnered with her for nearly a decade. I wanted to make sure I took time in my welcome message to thank her – as Brea residents, she and I are thrilled to serve in the community we live in and I know that I would be no where without her support and encouragement.
As we move into Olinda’s new school year, I am thrilled to be coming aboard a team that has a proven track record of academic success, instructional innovation, and supportive care for children. Our school will continue to deliver excellent programs and services for our community and I look forward to learning how we can support the growth, development, and improvement of our work together. The prospects of working with this amazing team of teachers really excites me! I also anticipate utilizing our Multi-Purpose Room to conduct amazing shared learning experiences for our students as we continue to learn to use our new space. There are many outstanding things happening at our school and I know we will all learn and support one another toward new heights this school year!
We will be communicating with families in multiple ways and I encourage you to utilize each of them since they have different purposes to help support your needs. Please be sure to regularly check our school website at https://olinda.bousd.us and the district website at http://www.bousd.us for important information. Feel free to call us at (714) 528-7475 if we can assist you or your child in any way. Our school office will re-open on August 6th, class lists will be posted on August 16th, and the first day of school is August 19th.
You can also follow the school’s Instagram account @OlindaElementary to connect with the school and experiences our staff and community are creating for our children. I believe that it is very important to join the Olinda Elementary Parent Teacher Organization, which operates an independent Facebook page (“Olinda Elementary PTO”) to help you stay linked up. Lastly, I personally utilize Twitter @PrincipalPree to collaborate with the global educational community and chronicle my journey as a lifelong learner; feel free to join those conversations or to see the types of things that make me smile!
We are going to have a very successful year and I am so ready to get started!
FLY EAGLES FLY!!
Preetom Bhattacharya, Ed.D.
Principal, Olinda Elementary School
Brea Olinda Unified School District