Real Talk with Rocha: Welcoming our new Principal

Debra Garcia, Features Editor/Business Manager

 At the end of last year, we said goodbye to our beloved principal of nine years, Carla Bruning. Bruning then announced that she was passing the torch to Katarzyna ‘Katie’ Rocha. With a new change in staff, we should get to know who our new principal is. 

   Rocha has been working for the education system for over 20 years. Once she moved from Poland to Brandon in her junior year, she knew she wanted to get into teaching. She worked as a teacher for ten years and then became an assistant principal at Bloomingdale High school.

   Ever since 2018, she was the Assistant Principal of Curriculum at Newsome. Now, she is so excited to be Newsome’s new principal. “I believe I’m going to have the opportunity to work and make an impact on a larger scale. Newsome High School is absolutely amazing and I would like for us to work together to see what legacy we can build to continue with Newsome being number one,” says Rocha. 

   Rocha has a lot of goals in mind for this year regarding the school. She wants to make sure that all students feel that school is a safe place to be. She also wants students to get the full learning experience. “It is my job to support the students and support the teachers making sure you guys have the tools necessary to be successful,” she said.  

   With COVID 19 changing almost everyone’s lives, Rocha gets so many questions about how the school is handling the pandemic. “Over time I’m hoping that students will find this a little better to adjust to,” says Rocha. “I saw a lot of things right now that we have put in place to making sure that the campus is available, that we can social distance students in after-school activities we have done a fantastic job to adjusting to and following the new norms, continuing making sure that Newsome stays number one and providing this safe environment for all our kids.” 

   With the long lineup of previous Newsome principals, Rocha wants to leave her mark, or in other words, build her legacy. She said that “I believe that every single decision I make on behalf of the students, parents, and the community will change me. I’m hoping to be able to work with everyone because this school is a place where we should come together to bring our ideas and kind of look outside the box.” 

   Although we are starting this school year with different circumstances, Rocha is up for the challenge and loves being there for her students.  She would like to tell all 3,000 plus of her students  “Thank you thank you thank you for supporting us and following the rules, and if there’s anything the student needs me for they just need to find me because I’m here to make sure that I listen to each one of them.”