Principal's Message

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Principal's Message

Principal's Message

 
 
  Gary Hutsler
 
Welcome to Independence Elementary School! It is an honor to serve as the Elementary Assistant Principal for the Hopewell Area School District! After graduating from Westminster College with a degree in Elementary Education (K-6), I went on to receive my Master’s in Education and K-12 Principal's Certification from California University of Pennsylvania. For eight years, I taught fifth grade at Jefferson Elementary in the Mt. Lebanon School District. Being a school administrator has always been a lifelong dream, and I’m extremely blessed to be able to serve the district in this capacity. I look forward to communicating with the children, faculty, staff, and community to provide the best education possible for students. As the Elementary Assistant Principal, I can promise that each decision that I make will be made with the students’ best interest in mind. I believe that every student is capable of achieving, and it is every staff member's responsibility to create a positive, inviting, safe school climate where students feel valued, challenged, and confident in their pursuit of success. I am truly excited to share my passion for Education with the wonderful community of Hopewell! 

I am blessed to work in a school with wonderful children, a motivated and dedicated staff, and parents who understand the meaning of a family-school partnership. Our faculty and staff remain eager to make a difference each day by providing the best educational experience for your children. Please know that your child's safety, education, and well-being will always be our top priority! Our curriculum continues to be aligned to both the Pennsylvania State Standards and the Common Core Standards which promote 21st Century learning skills. In addition, our teachers implement research based strategies to promote high student achievement in our schools. Parental involvement in our school community remains high, and for that parents are applauded. Research demonstrates that parental involvement is the number one factor in determining student success in school. First and foremost, parental involvement means getting children to school every day and getting them there on time. Being present to monitor student homework, providing a quiet place for homework completion and being informed about progress and grades are all important to student success.  For those parents who are able to volunteer in the school, we would encourage you to do so!  Please reach out if you would like more information. These opportunities can provide you with a firsthand look at the culture of expectations established at Independence Elementary and to contribute to the positive climate of the school.   
 
Finally, I wanted to mention that I serve as a Captain at the 171st Air Refueling Wing and hold the position of the Aircraft Maintenance Operations Officer in the United States Air Force. My time in the military has been extremely rewarding and has taught me many life lessons that I have used in Education. I look forward to bringing a unique perspective to the district as we work diligently to provide students with every opportunity to succeed academically, socially, and emotionally. Family means everything to me in life, and I want nothing more than to adopt this mentality with everyone I encounter throughout Hopewell. I know we have been presented with some unusual circumstances, but I know with your partnership, we will continue to provide students with the best education possible. I look forward to being in a position to make a difference for our Viking family. Our communication and collaboration in the days ahead will set the foundation for our students’ future success. I thank every stakeholder in advance for your trust and partnership throughout this journey as we work to ensure each and every student has memorable experiences throughout their time at Hopewell that will last a lifetime! :)


 



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