January 17, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Two SMMUSD Elementary Schools Get New Principals

Cynthia McGregory, Lila Daruty appointed to Franklin and Webster respectively

By Staff Writer

Students at two Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD) middle schools, Franklin and Webster, will arrive on the first day of school in the fall with new principals.

Over the past month, the SMMUSD announced the promotion of Cynthia McGregory to the principal of Franklin Elementary School in Santa Monica and appointed Lila Daruty as the new principal of Webster Elementary School in Malibu.

McGregory has served as the assistant principal at Franklin since August 2017. Previously, she was the lead and education specialist at the SMMUSD Off Campus Learning Center (OCLC) located at Olympic High School since 2008.

McGregory has been in the teaching profession since 1997, having worked at the Linden Center Non-Public School in various teaching and administrative positions including Independent Education Plan (IEP) coordinator, site coordinator, resource specialist program teacher and special education teacher, prior to joining SMMUSD.

“I am beyond ecstatic and honored to be the next principal of Franklin Elementary,” McGregory said. “As I shift leadership gears from assistant principal to principal, I humbly accept the charge of maintaining a secure and comforting school environment where creativity, critical thinking, and academic excellence are fostered on a daily basis. I truly look forward to continuing our work of inspiring and equipping every Franklin student with all of the necessary skills for them to become visionaries who are life-long learners and positive contributors in society.”

McGregory earned her Bachelor of Arts in law and society and Black studies, a double major, from University of California, Santa Barbara; a Master of Science in education with a 2 concentration in special education from Mount St. Mary’s College and a Master of Arts in educational administration with distinction, from Cal State Northridge.

McGregory replaces Deanna Sinfield who was appointed director of special education for SMMUSD.

Daruty has served as the half time assistant principal at Grant Elementary School in Santa Monica since 2014 and the half time coordinator of beginning teacher induction (BTSA) for the school district since 2013.

As the BTSA coordinator, she supervised and trained new teachers and provided additional professional development and support for current teachers as part of a statewide program.

Prior to these leadership positions, Daruty taught at Will Rogers Learning Community and McKinley Elementary School in Santa Monica since 2004. She taught for six years prior in the Hawthorne School District. She has taught second, third, fourth and fifth grades. As a teacher, she was honored as teacher of the year and rookie of the year in the Hawthorne USD. She previously served as PTA president and also worked on school budgets, participated in school site council and is known for working to improve class and school environments by encouraging and creating positive school culture and opportunities for all students.

“I am so honored and excited about the opportunity to be principal of Webster Elementary,” Daruty said. I look forward to working with the students, teachers and families that make up this beautiful community in Malibu. I am committed to bringing my love for learning and dedication to supporting the academic and social-emotional needs of all students. I know that through collaborative efforts we will continue to ensure Webster students become the creative and critical thinking innovators of our future.”

Daruty holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and cross-cultural language and academic development (CLAD) / multiple subject teaching credential from Loyola Marymount University; a master’s degree in education / tier 1 credential from UCLA and completed the Principals Leadership Institute there. She earned an administrative tier 2 credential from UC Irvine.

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