Photo By: Elliott Burr/Town Crier
Blach Intermediate School will be without a familiar face next year after Principal Leslie Crane announced plans to resign at the end of the school year.
“I like to equate it to, in your life, you have crossroads,” Crane said. “And when you have crossroads, you need to make choices. So I am at a crossroads in my life and I am making a choice.”
The Los Altos School District has employed Crane her entire professional career. She began at Egan Junior High School as a physical education and health teacher and athletic director. After 10 years at Egan, she became principal at Oak School. Four years later, she transitioned to Blach, where she has served as principal for seven years.
“I was born and raised in Los Altos,” she said. “I came back and have been an administrator and teacher for 24 years and I feel I have given everything I can to this community. I love this community very, very much, but I also think that I need a change.”
Crane said her father, a teacher, inspired her to teach. Listening to him discuss his passion for his work, she realized a career in education has many benefits.
“I think the highlights are watching the children grow,” she said. “Not only academically, but to watch their social and emotional growth as they turn into people – especially now being in the junior high and helping them transition to high school.”
Crane said she would miss her connections with people in the community and their day-to-day interactions. She added that the kind gestures and comments she has received since announcing her resignation have touched her.
“I want to emphasize how much I love this community, and I am very honored and proud to have served (here) for so many years,” she said.
Crane said she has not ruled out any possibilities for her future, but she looks forward to spending more time with her twin boys, currently attending kindergarten at Cherry Chase Elementary School in Sunnyvale.
“I honestly cannot tell you what my next adventure will be,” she said. “I’m not ruling anything out. I have two kids of my own, and being a mom is really important to me. I am sure it will play a role going forward.”
Crane’s parting words to the community: “Believe in public education, despite everything that is going on. Don’t let the politics or the emotional turmoil get in the way. It is all about the children and achieving the best education possible for your children.”
Superintendent Jeff Baier said the district accepted applications for Crane’s post through March 16.
Baier said the district narrowed the applicants down to six, with a group of parents, principals, district staff and school staff conducting interviews this week.
Baier said he expects three candidates to make it to the next round, which requires an interview with the district administrative council.
Announcement of the new principal, according to Baier, could come either at the Monday or April 23 board meeting.