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Degrees and Certifications:

Bachelors of Arts in Mass Media Communication -- CSU San Bernardino Masters of Arts in Education Administration -- Cal Poly Pomona Clear Single Subject Teaching Credential (History and English) -- CSU Northridge twitter: @jlyonsCHS instagram: @padreprincipal

Mr. Jonathan Lyons

Welcome to the 2022-23 school year, Padres!

I hope you had a wonderful summer and are looking forward to the start of another exciting year. As I enter my fourth year as Principal at Carmel High I can’t help but feel a sense of both relief and excitement that we as a school are on the right track to success for all our students. Relief that we have made it through last year without losing a single day of instruction to school closure. Excitement that there is a renewed energy and enthusiasm in our students to get involved and create a new sense of community on our campus.  

I managed to get a couple of weeks away, including returning to Southern California for the first time in three years to see some old friends and spend time in my former locale. I will admit it was odd to visit a place I lived in for so many years and find it foreign–and unbearably hot! I have fully assimilated to life on the Monterey Peninsula and am glad for it. Many of our staff also managed to get away for a time to recharge their batteries and, for some, see friends or family they have not seen since the days prior to the pandemic. I would imagine it was the same for many of our parents and students as well. If the past three years have taught us anything it is the precious nature of time with loved ones and the value those interactions have. 

While my vacation was short, it did afford me some time to do some reading, lament the state of my beloved Los Angeles Angels, and, like last summer, discover new television shows to obsess over. While last year the eternal positively of Ted Lasso powered my summer thinking, this year I was enamored with food and cooking shows. I was especially drawn to ones which gave me insight into the workings of the professional kitchen, whether documentary style like Chef’s Table, or scripted in the form of an amazing show called The Bear. Over the years, cooking shows have made celebrities out of some of the more prolific chefs and allowed us to see how they choose to run their organizations. Some kitchens are constructed with strict divisions between the chefs and the patrons who choose to eat there. These chefs often create beautiful plates of food but lack the insight into whether those eating are actually enjoying the dish. 

On the other end of the spectrum of food shows are those which celebrate the uniqueness of how food is prepared, how it influences our lives and how we interact with one another. These shows revel in pastoral images of grapes ripening on vines and marinara sauces lovingly watched over for hours in anticipation of the evening meal. The folks who cook in this environment are often portrayed as soulful and appreciative of their role as provider for their customers. I watched as one chef spoke eloquently of how, if they slow down and allow the meal to come together, her patrons’ joy increases exponentially. The familial aspect of this type of kitchen experience is reflected in the value placed on the experience of eating the food, not on the food itself. 

So, outside of making everyone hungry, what am I trying to impart? Is it that we should eat more throughout the year? (Of course, but that is besides the point.). It’s that school can very much be like a fine dining experience. The ingredients of great lessons are carefully prepared and nurtured by our teachers, who continue to be Michelin star level talents in the classroom. But it is the patrons that we must keep in mind. Our students can sometimes be the pickiest of eaters but when they tear through a lesson with reckless love for learning, it makes our teachers/chefs hearts full of joy. It is our commitment this year to keep our patrons/students in mind and seek to serve them as well as we possibly can throughout this year and nurture their minds until they are full. 

Many chefs speak of their relationship with their customers as one of family. Cooking for another, much like teaching, is a slow process that must be watched over and tended to in order for all the ingredients to come together. I have been encouraged this past week by our staff’s energy and willingness to try new things in preparation for their classes that will yield great new recipes of learning. For our students, we hope we have set the table for you to be successful this year and that you will help us create the type of community that we all crave here at our little bistro we call Carmel High School. I cannot wait to see you all next week and get this school year off and running. 

Now, who's hungry?

 
Last Modified on August 3, 2022