Oceanside High principal looks back on a busy first year

Excerpts from the San Diego Union Tribune, by Lola Sherman, 6/1/2017

Teresa Hill-Collis says she would have taken a demotion rather than be principal in any school other than Oceanside High, her own alma mater. She says she would have asked to stay at OHS as a teacher instead.

Teresa Hill-Collis with OHS Cheerleaders

But she didn’t have to make that tough choice because she was named Oceanside High principal last fall and now has a full academic year to look back on and her first graduation as head of the school next Thursday.

Does she have any regrets? She says no.

“I do have the same passion” to get up in the morning and look forward to each new day at school, Hill-Collis said. “I’m excited, and I can’t wait to get to work.” Her fears that there might be a lot of stress have not materialized.

When she was interviewed by the Union-Tribune’s Deborah Sullivan Brennan upon taking the job last year, Hill-Collis said she figured her background of 14 years in the military has taught her how to handle any emergency situations as they arrive.

She’s also been a special-education teacher at Oceanside High and taught at all-male New Haven in Vista, where emotionally disturbed boys are referred.

“I loved it” she said of working with those kinds of students.
Still, she said, “my ultimate goal was to get back here.”

OHS employs 98 teachers and enrolls 2,000 students.
Hill-Collis thinks it was about half that size when she graduated in 1985 (and went almost immediately into the Air Force.)
But she since has earned a bachelor’s of arts degree in sociology and three master’s.

“I can only hope that the renovation of downtown Oceanside with a lot of positive attention” to OHS and its programs and will have a “jump-on-the bandwagon” effect as far as the high school (just west of Interstate 5 at the edge of downtown) is concerned.

Hill-Collis also thinks the new performing arts building — a theater and concert hall combined with classrooms and rehearsal space — will make an impact.

She expects that it will be ready for next school year.

Congratulations, Mrs. Hill-Collis and Thank You for a Great Year!

For Lola Sherman’s entire article, click  Oceanside High principal looks back on a busy first year.