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First Year in the Big Chair

Left%3A+Assistant+Principal+Sarah+Strassburger+says+hello+to+co-worker%2C+IB+English+teacher+Cerena+Thomsen.+%0A%0A
Left: Assistant Principal Sarah Strassburger says hello to co-worker, IB English teacher Cerena Thomsen.

Left: Assistant Principal Sarah Strassburger says hello to co-worker, IB English teacher Cerena Thomsen.

Photo By: Madison Osberger-Low.

Photo By: Madison Osberger-Low.

Left: Assistant Principal Sarah Strassburger says hello to co-worker, IB English teacher Cerena Thomsen.

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From teaching English in the classroom, to conducting attendance policies and new strategies for better education, Sarah Strassburger has done much in her first year in the “big chair” as Assistant Principal at Aspen High School. Strassburger started her teaching career in San Francisco and went on to teach English at Roaring Fork High School, followed by 10 years as a teacher at AHS.

“It’s been a great year, busy so far. We are working really hard right now trying to make positive changes and that’s really exciting,” Strassburger said. She said she still loves being in the classroom and getting that teacher’s perspective.

Strassburger experienced many long days as an English teacher, grading papers, helping students with their essays, and creating great relationships with her students. She didn’t realize how hard she and teachers actually work until she sat in the Assistant Principal’s desk.

“I always knew teaching was so hard, but this makes it clear on this side teaching is really, really hard and it’s a lot of work,” Strassburger said. “And I knew that as a teacher, but you really see it when you aren’t teaching and you realize how hard people are working.” 

Principal Tharyn Mulberry said that he loves the way Strassburger interacts with the students and said she has been great with new systems and additions to the school.

“She’s been really informational with the kids here as far as the attendance system and the student practices programs,” Mulberry said. “I am really happy with those two programs. Plus she is really nice.”  

Senior Olivia Oksenhorn added that Strassburger was her teacher last year for IB English. When she got the job, Oksenhorn knew she was a perfect fit.

“Sarah was the most amazing teacher I have ever had,” Oksenhorn said. “When I heard she was gonna be the Assistant Principal I was excited because she is so organized, brilliant and I think that it was great she had been a teacher before because she understands how the teachers work and how the students interact. She is a great breadth of knowledge around the school.’’ 

Strassburger has also created an after school Wednesday program for students who have missed school with an unexcused absences, or have made poor choices in the past.

“A goal I had was to really support students, so when students make poor choices how can we really prevent them from making another poor choice to ensure that no matter what you are doing at Aspen High School, that it’s always a learning experience,” Strassburger said. “So if you are getting in trouble that you learn from it. If you are in the classroom you are learning so it’s really all about student learning.”

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