New Principal Profile - Sara Curto, SMS

Meet Sara Curto, the new principal of Sierra Middle School
Posted on 08/30/2022
Sara Curto

Sara Curto

Principal, Sierra Middle School

Who or what inspired you to enter the field of education?
I have always been surrounded by educators in my family - my mom, grandma, aunt, brother, husband, mother and father-in-law, and sister-in-law are all teachers and I tried to avoid going into education when I started college. But, it didn't last long after I took an elective class in college called Teaching 101 and it all fell into place for me. I've been on a "school year" schedule my whole life and wouldn't have it any other way.

Did you follow a traditional or unconventional path to become a principal?
I would say I followed a traditional path to becoming a principal with a few detours to work at the district level. I have learned so much as an educator in each role I've served and feel fortunate to be the principal at Sierra.

If you could write a book about your career path, what would you title it and why?
I would title a book about my career path "The Universe Has Your Back." I have come to believe that things always work out the way they should, even when it doesn't seem like it. My career path has had as many successes as it has had learning moments. In the end, I'm always able to recognize that I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be when I'm supposed to be there.

What is a work-related accomplishment that you are the most proud of?
I'm extremely proud when I know students' names and can greet them in the halls, talk to them at lunch, and connect with them at events. When you are no longer a classroom teacher, connecting to students can be more difficult so I take pride in working hard to learn student names and about them.

How do you relax and regroup after a stressful day?
I'm a huge reader and also enjoy reality TV as a guilty pleasure (though it's embarrassing to say which shows because they are so mindless). More than anything though I will drive home in silence to reset before I enter the chaos of being a mom. I also walk in the morning to get my mind right for the day ahead and think through things that linger on my mind.

What do you like most about working in public education?
Public education is a place where finding common ground, learning about different perspectives, and serving the needs of the students in front of you is unmatched. We support such a variety of students and families which provides an opportunity to work on people skills, empathy, and creativity in problem-solving every day. No other job keeps you on your toes quite as much as working in a public school.

What is your favorite way to show staff appreciation?
I like showing staff appreciation in small ways, like writing a note of thanks, acknowledging hard work, or putting candy in someone's mailbox when I know they are having a tough time. Any opportunity to give the gift of time, I really try to do that since educators always need more time. Our staff work incredibly hard and deserve so much more appreciation than we can ever give.

What is your favorite way to energize yourself at work?
Being with students is always an energizer. I visit classrooms if I'm having a bad day, need a smile, or just a moment to refocus on what's most important. I can always count on a boost when I surround myself with students.

What do you like to do outside of work?
I love to hang out with my family, read, watch TV, and spend time outside. I've also been known to enjoy organizing things which really is self-care for me.

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In compliance with Titles VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and Colorado law, the Douglas County School District RE-1 does not unlawfully discriminate against otherwise qualified students, employees, applicants for employment, or members of the public on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, religion, ancestry, or need for special education services. Discrimination against employees and applicants for employment based on age, genetic information, and conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth is also prohibited in accordance with state and/or federal law. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public. The School District's Compliance Officer and Title IX Coordinator to address complaints alleging sexual harassment under Title IX is Aaron Henderson, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado, [email protected], 720-433-1083.

Outside Agencies

Complaints regarding violations of Title VI, (race, national origin), Title IX (sex, gender), Section 504/ADA (handicap or disability), may be filed directly with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite 310, Denver, CO 80204. Complaints regarding violations of Title VII (employment) and the ADEA (prohibiting age discrimination in employment) may be filed directly with the Federal Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 303 E. 17th Ave., Suite 510, Denver, CO 80202, or the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1050, Denver, CO 80202.

NOTICE OF DESTRUCTION OF SPECIAL EDUCATION RECORDS

Special Education records which have been collected by Douglas County School District related to the identification, evaluation, educational placement, or the provision of special education in the district, must be maintained under state and federal laws for the period of five (5) years after special education services have ended for the student. Special education services end when the student is no longer eligible for services, graduates, or completes his/her educational program at age 21, or moves from the district. This notification is to inform parents/guardians and former students of Douglas County School District's intent to destroy the special education records of students who exited special education services as of June 30, 2016. These records will be destroyed in accordance with state law unless the parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student notifies the school district otherwise. After five years, the records are no longer useful to the district, but may be useful to the parent/guardian or former student in applying for social security benefits, rehabilitation services, college entrance, etc. The parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student may request a copy of the records by requesting the records by email to [email protected]