Principal for a Day

Principal for a Day Sonia Nishan Tchayelian

In partnership with the Glendale Educational Foundation, Glendale Schools hosts Principal for a Day every year. Representatives from business, industry and organizations are invited to take the reins as principal of an elementary, middle or senior high school. Principal for a Day offers “guests” a taste of what it’s like to manage the complexities of a school campus. They also visit classrooms to see teaching and learning in action, interact with students and staff, and are updated on current issues affecting public education. Visitors are often challenged by using their own management styles in actual problem-solving situations. They learn quickly that principals and other school leaders encounter the same problems encountered in their own professional lives.

YMCA Marketing Director Jeanett Cordon said “These children, through action and words, are being taught that they are important, that education is the secret and that they can accomplish anything …anything at all!” after her visit to Franklin Elementary.

Glendale Police Dept. Lt. Todd Anderson observed “To see the Kindergarteners get right to work on their beautiful computers! I can’t even login to a computer… but to see a bright 5 year old do it was impressive. And 25 adults at Coffee with the Principal – this speaks volumes about Mrs. Alonso.”

More than 550 leaders from Glendale and the Foothills communities have participated in Principal for a Day. Guest principals have represented professions, businesses large and small, and special interest areas, ranging from banking, entertainment and hospital management to law, real estate and retail sales.

Questions regarding Principal for a Day may be directed to Elsa Chagolla, (818) 247-0466 or by email

Note: Principals for a Day are invited to spend the morning at their school, then meet other principals and guest principals for a luncheon and “honorary commencement.” The luncheon is hosted by the Glendale Educational Foundation, the Board of Education and Superintendent Winfred Roberson, at the district’s Administration Center, and concludes by 1:30. Principal for a Day will be videotaped for a future TV program on Charter Cable Channel 15, and AT&T U-Verse channel 99.

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