We extend the warmest of welcomes to Cara Henderson, who recently accepted the position of head of Upper School at St. Francis.
Most recently, Cara has served as interim dean of students, director of student life, director of special programs, and world languages chair—as well as Spanish teacher—at the Emery/Weiner School. She also spent 10 years at St. John's School as both teacher and world languages chair, for which she recruited and mentored a team of more than 25 educators. Whether she's face-to-face with students or peers, though, Cara counts as her highest calling the role of learning facilitator. "Teachers are charged with harnessing our students' natural curiosity and channeling it as we guide them through the inquiry process," she says. "I truly believe that learning is most meaningful when contextualized within real-life experiences."
Real life has been busy for Cara, who is currently working toward a spring doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Pennsylvania. She also holds a master's degree in education from Stanford University. While nearly 20 years of her experience has been at the high school level, she also served as a Spanish professor at the University of North Carolina. Describing herself as a "quintessential nerd," she says she thrives on ongoing professional development, and you might just as easily catch her presenting practitioner research at a national conference as diving into training in counseling and aiding students with special needs.
Perhaps Cara best sums up St. Francis's 60-plus years of dreams for our Upper School when she outlines her own ultimate goal: "I will strive to help create a learning community characterized by mutual respect, trust, and care." To that, there's only one thing we can say. Welcome to the family!
Please watch for news on upcoming opportunities to meet and greet Cara Henderson at St. Francis.
Stephen Lovejoy, MEd Head of School