Nicole “Nikki” Smith — who has been teaching in the Davis school district since 1998 — will be the new principal at Patwin Elementary School.
Smith has taught fourth-grade, first-grade and fourth-grade GATE classes at Korematsu and the former Valley Oak elementary schools. She also served as secondary summer school co-principal in 2006, and as interim principal at Korematsu Elementary from May through November 2010. She also recently served as a Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment facilitator and support provider in the school district.
Smith began her teaching career in 1993 at Burckhalter Elementary School in Oakland. She also taught at Union House Elementary School in Elk Grove before coming to the Davis school district.
Smith earned a bachelor’s degree in English with a minor in education at UC Davis in 1992. She completed her teaching credential through Sacramento State University the following year, and subsequently earned a cross-cultural language and academic development certificate through CSU Stanislaus, a reading specialist certificate through Sacramento State, a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction through Sacramento State and an administrative credential.
She also is the author of a children’s book, “The Little Christmas Elf,” published by Random House last year.
Smith was approved as the new Patwin principal at last Thursday’s meeting of the Davis school board. School board president Susan Lovenburg said, “Having worked in the district for many years, both at Valley Oak and Korematsu, Nikki is familiar with Davis students, their families and our culture. Her commitment to the success of all students, and her open and generous nature, bode well for her success at Patwin.”
School board trustee Sheila Allen, who has been a Korematsu parent, said “I’m pleased to hire one of our own, someone who has a long history with our district, as the new Patwin principal. She’ll do a great job.”
Smith told the trustees “Thank you for the faith you’ve shown in me. I’ve had wonderful opportunities and experiences in the Davis school district. I’m looking forward to becoming part of the Patwin family and working on behalf of the students and families there.”
Smith, who is now teaching at Korematsu, will phase in at Patwin over the next few months. Current Patwin Principal Michelle Flowers is moving to Folsom and wants to spend more time with family.