Administration & Staff

Timothy Farson, Principal

Timothy Farson, Principal

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Dear SDSCPA Community,

It is with a strong sense of commitment and passion that I embrace the opportunity to work with an incredible community united by a passion to ensure we provide every student with a world-class education in the arts and academics. At the San Diego School of Creative and Performing Arts—a nationally renowned school with a remarkable reputation for personalizing artistic and academic achievement to a highly diverse student body--I maintain the highest expectations for every student and staff member on our campus because we truly have something magical happening on our campus.

Raised in a small rural town in Ohio, I found the arts to be one of the few places I could embrace who I was, and learn to be comfortable within my own skin. In many ways, the arts became the place I could develop my beliefs, my wonderings, and my voice. I am indebted to my high school drama teacher, Ms. Meggitt, and her inspirational belief in me and my leadership as drama club president. I certainly wasn’t the best actor, nor the most confident young man, but she believed in me and created the space for opportunity. Reflection on these positive and powerful past experiences instantly create the impetus for much of my work as a leader at one of the best arts schools in the nation. I personally understand the role arts can play in developing a powerful student voice—whether it be on a canvas or on a stage or leading student government.

I began my university career at Kent State University in Philosophy. Craving a more urban and artistic community, I transferred into the Philosophy program at New York University. My life abruptly changed on September 11, 2001, however, having witnessed the falling of the World Trade Centers. It was my first true encounter with death and a first personal realization of humanity’s universal craving for meaningful connection and voice. It is only later in life that I realized the powerful influence art has in establishing this connection and voice—voices often for the silenced.

In 2009, I began my teaching career as an English and middle school Science teacher at SDSCPA. I have enjoyed being involved in many aspects of the SDSCPA student experience as the Journalism Adviser, ASB Student Government Adviser, SSC member, Department Chair and so on. Since that time, I have embraced and protected what I believe is a magical learning experience unlike any other for all students.

I lead from the heart. My classroom philosophy that engaging hearts engages mind transcends into my work with our staff and community. I will tirelessly work to build connections with our SDSCPA community, advocates, and arts leaders from around the country. I am a philosopher by nature and always reflecting on way to increase student voice, create innovative learning environments, and most importantly create sustainable infrastructures in a sometimes shaky world of education funding. I know and understand the power of connection and uniting people in a shared vision for the hope and promise of a transformational arts and academic education.

Humbled by the honor of being your principal, I pledge to keep the SDSCPA vision robust and alive, lead through compassion for all staff and students, and maintain a reflective lens focusing on equity and opportunity for all of our young artists and scholars. And from this, I will tirelessly advocate for the SDSCPA students, staff, and community to ensure a safe and diverse environment for creative exploration, rigorous learning and training, and opportunities to create powerful connections through the arts. Our students don't just love to be artists, they have to be artists.

With dedication and heart,

Timothy Farson

Roxann Hatfield

Roxann Hatfield, Associate Principal

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Mrs. Hatfield is the newest member of the SDSCPA administration. She is not a stranger to the SDSCPA family having taught in the Science Department for 12 years and then serving as the school’s Graduation Coach for the past 6 years. She is excited to be part of such a visionary team. She has served on a variety of committees and organizing 6th and 9th grade Bridging Days. She believes that all students can learn and each student has a special path/ journey in place for them but it is up to them to take the first step. Educators serve as the facilitators in molding our young people into well-rounded individuals who can take on the world.

Mrs. Hatfield holds a Bachelors of Arts in Biochemistry from UCSD and earned her Administrative credential and Masters in Educational Leadership from San Diego State University. She is a native Californian.

Richard OjedaRichard Ojeda, Associate Principal

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Looking into the future through the lens of equitable opportunity, Mr. Ojeda’s approach to education has been that of fairness, honesty, and accountability. A native San Diegan, Mr. Ojeda attended Sherman and Brooklyn ES, to include Roosevelt/Wilson MS and graduated from Hoover HS in 1992. After graduating HS, he enlisted in the United States Navy where he served a tour in the Persian Gulf (Operation Desert Watch) and was stationed in Pearl Harbor, HI.

Upon discharge from active service, Mr. Ojeda pursued higher education and eventually found his passion working as an Education Specialist for students with severe cognitive and physical disabilities. Working with students and families and advocating for those who cannot became a passion for Mr. Ojeda. Earning his master’s degree in special education, Mr. Ojeda found other opportunities to support students and families via administrative leadership.

San Diego has offered so many wonderful opportunities and I want to take advantage of what are great city has to offer. We offer a unique perspective on culture, equity, honesty, and accountability. What great gifts to share with San Diego’s future!

LauraLaura Schiavo, Instructional Coordinator

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Laura Schiavo is a violinist who whole-heartedly believes in the power of arts education and its ability to transform lives. She started the violin at age three and has been in love with music ever since. Laura was born in California, but spent most of her childhood moving around the country as an Army kid. She always felt challenged in making new friends and starting over at new schools every few years and longed for a true sense of belonging. When she moved to North Carolina in 1997, she joined her 7th grade orchestra at school. For the first time, she felt like she had a place at school where she was meant to be. She was around like minded people who loved music in the way she did, in the same way that music spoke to her heart. This experience and finding this sense of belonging and community in her middle school orchestra was the beginning of her journey to become an orchestra teacher herself. Her passion for education began with the desire to give the same gift of belonging and love to students that changed her whole life.

She was thrilled to join the SDSCPA team in the 2022-23 school year as Instructional Coordinator for the Academics to support teachers and students in ensuring the highest quality instruction in every classroom in communities where everyone is loved and valued. She loves being part of the SDSCPA team to continually create that feeling of belonging and community in our entire school that she experienced first in orchestra.

Laura loves the intersection of arts and academics and strives to honor students as artists through the lens of everything they study at SDSCPA. Education has been her lifelong passion and she began her teaching career in the San Diego Unified School District in 2008. Prior to coming to SDSCPA, Laura was a Resource Teacher for the MSAP Grant in SDUSD’s VAPA Department and had been a classroom teacher for thirteen years. She taught orchestra and math at CPMA Middle School for five years and taught elementary orchestra for eight years at Paradise Hills, Penn, Perry, and Zamorano Elementary. Laura has a BA in Music from Point Loma Nazarene University with a concentration in Music Education, and an MA in Educational Leadership and Administration from Brandman University. She holds an Administrative Credential and California Single Subject Teaching Credentials in both Music and Foundational Level Mathematics. In 2012, Laura received the Schuchman Award for Excellence in Music Education from SDUSD and also received the CMEA Elementary Music Specialist Award. She received the CMEA Middle School Specialist Award in 2020. In 2017, Laura traveled to Washington D.C. to be on a team of teachers working with NAfME and the Library of Congress and she became a Teaching with Primary Sources Curriculum Writer; her curriculum can be found on the NAfME website. She was a member of the 2018 California Department of Education Visual and Performing Arts Standards Advisory Committee as the standards were revised, which are now the adopted California Arts Standards.

StrasserSusie Strasser, MSAP Grant Instructional Coordinator

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Susie Strasser received her B.A. in English and Psychology from UC Davis in 2000. She returned to San Diego and received her Masters in Education from UCSD in 2003 and her Administrative Credential from SDSU. Since starting at SCPA, she has taught AP English Literature, AP English Language, AP Psychology, American Literature, 9th grade English, Martial Arts, PE, and AVID. Susie is also head of the Creative Writing Department, which inducted its first majors in the 2011-2012 school year and teaches all the Creative Writing classes. In addition to teaching high school, Susie also teaches Kung Fu and Tai Chi at a local martial arts school. Over the past decade, she has competed in international tournaments in California, Florida, and Taiwan and has performed in China.

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