Dr. Rachel McKenna
I am so blessed to be here and a part of the Sacred Heart Parish School community!
I am a Southern California native, born and raised in Ventura County. I received my Bachelors of Science (BS) in Biology from UC-San Diego (UCSD), though I was most inspired by the coursework in my two minors, Public Service and Education Studies. I combined these interests and pursued a career in science education. Following my graduation from UCSD, I began a master’s program in science education at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana as part of the Alliance for Catholic Education program. As part of my Master’s program, I spent two years teaching middle school science at an inner-city school in New Orleans, Louisiana through the Americorps program. In addition to receiving my master’s degree, I received my Single Subject Teaching Credential in Biological Sciences.
Before moving to Northern California, I returned to San Diego where I gained experience as a third grade homeroom teacher. Most recently, I taught science for fourth through eighth grades at a Catholic school in the Diocese of San Jose. During my time at the school, I was a member of the Leadership Team, working primarily as the Data Team Lead. In this role, I worked to implement data in a digital form and to train faculty and staff how to effectively use data in their classrooms. I served as the Robotics Team Advisor and Event Partner.
During my time in the Diocese of San Jose, I received my Doctorate in Organization and Leadership, as well as my Administrative Credential, from the University of San Francisco. My dissertation, entitled “Girls and STEM in Catholic Schools: A Mixed Methods Exploration of Interest, Confidence, and Perceptions of STEM,” blends together my passions for technology and data use in Catholic schools.
My philosophy and vision for education includes educating the whole mind, body, and soul. I believe wholeheartedly in Catholic education. I myself am deeply rooted in the Catholic faith having attended Catholic school for my elementary, high school, and graduate-level education. I believe in providing an education that promotes and engages well-rounded students to reach their highest spiritual, intellectual, emotional, and social potential. A Catholic education is the foundation for the rest of your life!